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Public Symposium on “Rising Tensions in East Asia and the Japanese Response” in Geneva, Switzerland

 On January 12, RIPS held a public symposium entitled “Rising Tensions in East Asia and the Japanese response” in Geneva, Switzerland, partnering with the Geneva Centre for Security Policy (GCSP), one of the leading think tanks in Switzerland.

 The symposium was joined by nearly 100 participants including diplomats, scholars, practitioners from the UN and NGOs, and university scholars from Asia, North America and Europe. Prof. Narushige Michishita (National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies) gave a keynote speech. He discussed North Korea’s intentions to develop nuclear weapons and missiles, the shift in the US-North Korea relations, and Japan’s security policy towards the crisis in the Korean Peninsula. He also discussed the Japanese response towards the rising China, Japan-US relations, Japan’s proactive defense policy, and the territorial disputes.

 The panel discussions followed the keynote speech. The first session, “Security Challenges in East Asia,” was chaired by Masashi Nishihara (RIPS) and participated by Dr. Nicola Casarini (Istituto Affari Internazionali), Mr. Ralph Cossa (Pacific Forum CSIS), and Prof. Matake Kamiya (National Defense Academy of Japan). The second session, “The Japanese Response,” was chaired by Dr. Christina Schori Liang (GCSP), joined by Dr. Marie Söderberg (European Institute of Japanese Studies), Dr. Robert D. Eldridge (Institute for International Policy Studies), and Prof. Michishita. Messrs. Michishita, Kamiya and Eldridge also mentioned the territorial disputes regarding the Senkaku Island and Takeshima.

 The symposium also welcomed comments and questions from the audience. The Q&A included such topics as the effectiveness of the economic sanctions against North Korea and the possibility of Japan’s nuclear armament

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