Japan Asks Government and Demonstrators in Egypt ``to Refrain from Violence``

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Tokyo - (PanOrient News) Japan called on the Government of Egypt today "to refrain from any violence against peaceful demonstrators," and also called on the people of Egypt to refrain from violence, to control themselves and to act with responsibility in a way that does not affect the civil life.

Foreign Minister Seiji Maehara stated on Saturday that Japan “is deeply concerned about the casualties caused by the clashes between demonstrators and security forces in various cities across Egypt from Tuesday, January 25.”

Minister Maehara stressed in this statement that Japan “attaches great importance to the role of Egypt for peace and stability in the whole Middle Eastern and African region and strongly hopes that the Government of Egypt will start urgently to engage with its people and restore the political stability and the calm daily life of the people through advancing reforms in a way that gains support from a wide range of the people.”

Regarding President Mubarak’s speech about his intention to carry out political reforms, Japan hopes that the President will implement reforms, which gain support of the people on a large scale, according to the statement.

Meanwhile, about 50 Egyptians demonstrated today in front of the Egyptian embassy in Tokyo and shouted against the government of President Husni Mubarak. They demanded free elections and the dissolution of the Parliament.

"Go Out Mubarak," and "The Game is Over," were some slogans shouted by the demonstrators. They also called on the Egyptian government to respect the peaceful protests.

The demonstration was peaceful, with Japanese Police maintaining the order and traffic in the area. The protest gathering lasted for about one hour.

Earlier in the day, the Japanese foreign ministry has upgraded its security warning for Egypt, advising Japanese travelers to postpone trips to that country "whatever the purpose is."

The Travel Division at the Ministry urged Japanese nationals already in Egypt "to leave the country if they can do so, or to stay away from demonstrations and rallies, and "never try to take photos of protesters or police officers".

The ministry advised its countrymen "to avoid going out alone and to stay away from local government offices, religious institutions or places where many people are gathering," it said.

The ministry also set up an emergency taskforce, headed by Foreign Minister Seiji Maehara, ordering diplomatic missions in Middle East and Africa to ensure the safety of Japanese citizens in the region.

Photo: Demonstrators before the Egyptian Embassy in Tokyo

PanOrient News

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