Report  Foreign Affairs and National Security  2017.06.16

"The 21st PAC Policy Simulation: Protection of Japanese Nationals and Crisis Management Under the New National-Security Legal System" Summary Report and Assessment



On November 14 and 15, 2015 the Canon Institute for Global Studies (CIGS) held the 21st PAC Policy Simulation: "Protection of Japanese Nationals and Crisis Management Under the New Peace and Security Legislation." The main themes of this simulation were how to promote crisis management of the Japanese companies that strive to operate in overseas markets, how to protect the safety of Japanese nationals overseas, and how the new mission of Japan Self-Defense Forces involved in international cooperation activities should be positioned, all based on the new Peace and Security Legislation were approved by the Diet in September 2015.

The preceding simulation (the 20th PAC Policy Simulation) set the theme "New Peace and Security Legislation: is it seamless?". Leveraging the crisis scenarios in the areas surrounding Japan and the developments in South China Sea, it focused on how the Japanese government will determine "the situation that has significant impact on Japan's national security" and "the situation that provides existential threats for Japan" and how the new laws will be applied under these circumstances. .This time the scenario was positioned as the second round of reviewing the new Peace and Security Legislation, with East Africa (Somalia, South Sudan, Djibouti) as the setting for the simulation. The main issues addressed were Japan's expanding mission in international cooperation in the region, along with protection and rescue of Japanese nationals and crisis response. In that sense, the 20th and 21st policy simulations can be considered parts one and two, respectively, of the policy simulation on this topic.

The new Peace and Security Legislation includes protective measures for Japanese nationals overseas as follows: "Units and other organizations of the Self-defense Forces (SDF) may carry out measures to protect Japanese nationals whose lives or physical safety may be under threat during emergency situations in foreign countries" (Article 84-3 of the Self-Defense Forces Act). Specifically, this authorizes the SDF to carry out protective measures including use of weaponry to perform a specific mission to protect Japanese nationals in a case in which no combat is taking place, and the consent of the country involved and cooperation with the relevant authorities in that country could be expected. An earlier amendment to the Self-Defense Forces Act (Article 84-4: Transport of Japanese nationals and others overseas) authorized the SDF to perform a more pragmatic role in transportation of Japanese nationals overseas.

The Report of the Council on the Protection of Japanese Nationals and Japanese Enterprises Overseas, prepared based on the lessons from the January 2013 hostage-taking incident in Algeria, recommended cooperation and sharing of information between government and the private sector on a regular basis as well as improving response capabilities when crises occur and afterward. Furthermore, following the incident in which two Japanese nationals were captured and killed by the extremist group IS in the beginning of 2015, the Japanese government indicated a policy of enhancing information gathering and analysis regarding Islamic extremism, including enhancing its diplomatic establishments in the Middle East and training experts well-versed in the languages and cultures of the region. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs also established a new International Terrorism Information Gathering Unit, as it plans both to enhance information gathering and strengthen exchange with the security and intelligence organizations of other countries.

This policy simulation considered how to protect the safety of Japanese nationals and how to respond in the event of a crisis, in light of the newly established Peace and Security Legislation and various other recent reforms. In doing so, it envisioned the scenarios of ensuring the safety of commercial ships, protection of civilians in the face of a worsening security situation in North Africa, and growing risks in connection with new peace-keeping operation (PKO) missions.

This policy simulation also considered how the government and businesses should make decisions amid increasingly complex interactions among sources of information, as information is communicated through not only government agencies but also media, criminal organizations, and members of the public via social networking services (SNS).

Approximately 40 people, including active government officials, researchers, businesspeople, and journalists, participated in this two-day simulation, from which numerous lessons learned and challenges were identified. The simulation involved the role-playing of the following teams and players: the Japanese government (consisting of the Prime Minister's Official Residence, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Defense, and the National Police Agency), Djibouti, Somalia and South Sudan, terrorist organizations (armed groups in Somalia and Ethiopia and forces inside Djibouti), the media (Japanese and international),civilians (hostages' families and bloggers), and private enterprise (the shipping company involved in the simulated incident).

Each player took part in specific actions such as diplomatic negotiations, consensus-building, and reporting of information while ascertaining the facts of the situation and considering policy responses amid a constantly changing situation in East Africa, over the 24-hour period from the morning of Saturday, November 14 to the morning of Sunday, November 15....

"The 21st PAC Policy Simulation: Protection of Japanese Nationals and Crisis Management Under the New National-Security Legal System" Summary Report and Assessment