Kishida to join NPT Review Conference virtually

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Prime Minister Fumio Kishida at a press conference in Tokyo on Dec. 21

Prime Minister Fumio Kishida has mapped out a policy not to attend the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference in New York that opens Jan. 4, due to the rapid spread of the omicron variant of the novel coronavirus in the city.

Kishida was expected to deliver a speech at the conference, but will attend the meeting virtually or deliver a prerecorded speech.

Kishida has called his efforts toward a world without nuclear weapons his life’s work.

He had aimed to participate in person in the conference, which discusses nuclear disarmament and nonproliferation, and to contribute to the success of the conference. But he apparently decided not to attend in person partly because the number of conference attendees is expected to be limited anyway due to the spread of omicron.

Set to take all possible measures, Kishida is believed to have taken into account that the omicron variant is gradually spreading in Japan. He also decided not to visit his Hiroshima Prefecture constituency at the end of the year.