Japan’s Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and Ireland’s Prime Minister Micheal Martin attend the Japan-Ireland Summit Meeting at the prime minister’s office in Tokyo.
Taoiseach Micheál Martin has invited Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida to Ireland as the two world leaders met for the first time in Tokyo.
On the second day of his State visit to Japan, Mr Martin signed a joint statement with the Japanese committing to strong economic ties and combatting the international threat of nuclear weapons.
During a meeting in Kantei Palace, the Prime Minister’s residence, the Taoiseach said “everyone has fond memories” of Mr Kishida’s previous visit to Ireland as Japanese Foreign Minister in 2017.
“I would like to take this opportunity to invite you back to Ireland as Prime Minister of Japan when your schedule permits,” Mr Martin added.
Mr Kishida said he “clearly remembers” his State visit to Ireland and thanked the Taoiseach for his condolence on the tragic murder of former Prime Minsiter Shinzo Abe who was shot during a recent Japanese election campaign.
“I am in strong shock and outrage that Mr Abe’s life was taken away by an unreasonable violence in the middle of the election – the very foundation of democracy,” he said. “I am determined to fully defend the democracy in Japan without giving away any violence,” he added.
Mr Martin described Mr Abe as a “truly significant and respected figure on the globe stage” and said his killing was an “assault on democracy”.
“It reveals the fragility and vulnerability of political life. We note that it happened during an election but the fact you held the election anyway shows in many ways the resilience of your democracy and I know your democracy is in safe hands with you,” he said.
The Taoiseach and Prime Minister both condemned the Russian invasion of Ukraine with Mr Martin calling it an “affront to the international rules based order”.
The Taoiseach said the two leaders committed to campaigning to “see a world free from the threat of nuclear weapons”.