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Justice Ministers' Communiqué: Tokyo Declaration
Tokyo, July 7, 2023
We, the Justice Ministers and Attorneys General of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom (UK) and the United States of America (US), and the Commissioner for Justice of the European Union (EU) met with the Justice Minister and Prosecutor General of Ukraine and representatives of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) at the G7 Justice Minist Affairs Diplomacy" initiative as part of its coordinated diplomatic approach, which aims to uphold and reinforce the free and open internationers' Meeting held on 7 July 2023 in Tokyo. The Meeting was held under the Ministry of Justice of Japan's "Justiceal order based on the rule of law, respecting the UN Charter to the benefit of countries, large and small.
We confirmed our firm resolve to maintain and strengthen the momentum of the G7 Meeting of Justice Ministers held last year in Berlin under the German Presidency, and reaffirmed our joint commitment to steadily promote our shared values such as the rule of law and respect for human rights that serves as the cornerstones of our societies, particularly in times of unprecedented global challenges. We call on all partners to join us in working together towards building societies that all people can enjoy.
We continue to condemn in the strongest terms Russia's illegal unprovoked, and unjustifiable war of aggression against Ukraine, which constitutes a blatant violation of international law, and reiterate our unwavering commitment to stand with Ukraine.
We reconfirm our steadfast commitments made in the Berlin Declaration adopted during the G7 Meeting of Justice Ministers held last year, and will continue to cooperate and coordinate closely with Ukrainian authorities to make all efforts to ensure accountability for those who are responsible for the atrocity crimes committed in the course of Russia's war of aggression against Ukraine, in line with the Berlin Declaration, as well as with the 19 May, 2023 G7 Leaders' Statement on Ukraine issued during the Hiroshima Summit. We will continue to work together with partners to support initiatives of the G7 and its partners in this regard. We also reconfirm our commitment to support investigations and prosecutions of atrocity crimes in Ukraine, including those involving conflict-related sexual and gender-based violence, bearing in mind the important role of victims and witnesses in the investigation of such crimes and supporting Ukrainian authorities in this regard. We welcome the start of the operational work of the International Centre for the Prosecution of the Crime of Aggression against Ukraine at Eurojust on 3 July, 2023.
In addition, as Justice Ministers and Attorneys General of the G7 and Commissioner of Justice of the EU, we reaffirm our commitment to support Ukraine in its efforts to "build-back-better", in particular the reforms undertaken in the field of law and justice. We recognise that such efforts will serve as the foundation of reconstructing a stronger and more resilient society based on the rule of law and will contribute to Ukraine's EU accession process. We commend the work of the G7 Ambassadors' Support Group for Ukraine in advancing justice and anti-corruption reforms. We welcome and continue to participate in ongoing bilateral, multilateral and regional efforts to assist Ukraine, such as the Ukraine Recovery Conference held in London on 21 June, 2023, and intend to continue to align our efforts to reinforce momentum behind Ukraine's recovery and reconstruction. We will continue our efforts to ensure that Russia pays for the long-term reconstruction of Ukraine and reaffirm that, consistent with our respective legal systems, Russia's sovereign assets in our jurisdictions remain immobilised until Russia pays for the damages it has caused to Ukraine.
We recognise anti-corruption as a very important area in which the G7 will endeavour to provide further assistance to Ukraine in this regard, acknowledging the threat corruption poses to the stability and security of societies, undermining democratic institutions and values, and jeopardizing the rule of law. We welcome the significant efforts under way in Ukraine to fight corruption including with support from the international community. We underscore that anti-corruption efforts are an indispensable component for the impartial, transparent and just allocation of resources and will be crucial for ensuring Ukraine emerges from the war even stronger.
To this end, we plan to establish the G7 Justice Ministers' "Anti-Corruption Task Force for Ukraine" (ACT for Ukraine) under the coordination of Japan, as a flexible and inclusive platform to bring together experts from the G7, Ukraine and relevant international bodies including the UNDP and UNODC. Through close consultation and coordination with the G7 Ambassadors' Support Group in Ukraine as well as existing partners engaged in anti-corruption work and ongoing initiatives, including the EU accession process, ACT for Ukraine will serve as a medium to share information and take stock of ongoing and planned anti-corruption initiatives in Ukraine, analyse the anti-corruption needs of Ukraine, and develop possible strategies, including the consideration of useful capacity building and/or technical assistance projects tailored to the needs of Ukraine.
We will also support Ukraine to enhance the capacity of its law enforcement and justice institutions, as appropriate, through the provision of capacity building programmes and legal technical assistance. We welcome the cooperation of relevant organisations and institutions such as the UNDP, UNODC, Organisation for Economic and Co-operation and Development (OECD), Council of Europe, the International Development Law Organisation and the United Nations Asia and Far East Institute for the Prevention of Crime and the Treatment of Offenders (UNAFEI) with the G7 on these issues.
We reiterate the important role of the G7 in addressing international issues in the field of law and justice. We further recognise that cooperation and coordination within the G7, as well as with relevant organisations and initiatives is a key contributing factor to promoting the rule of law in the international community. We are committed to working with our international partners to promote the rule of law globally.
We are committed to providing and/or supporting, as appropriate, the provision of (legal) technical assistance and capacity building to the justice and anti-corruption sector in other countries and jurisdictions, with a view to promoting shared values. We recognise our assistance should be based on mutual understanding, and tailored to the societal, economic, cultural, legal and other backgrounds of the recipient country, while respecting shared values. In order to strengthen our coordinated approach in delivering (legal) technical assistance and capacity building, to seek synergies, and to avoid duplication among initiatives, we intend to explore necessary measures to share information and liaise between ongoing or planned initiatives.
We will work to speed up cooperation and strengthen the fight against the most serious forms of transnational organised crime, such as by promoting the confiscation of criminal proceeds and new forms of cooperation, as envisaged by the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organised Crime (Palermo Convention of 2000).
We emphasise our commitment to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda and realisation of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals that seek to realise the human rights of all and to achieve gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls. Against this background, we reaffirm the role of the G7 in demonstrating global leadership to promote gender equality, and in fully respecting, promoting, and protecting the human rights and dignity of women and girls in all their diversity as well as LGBTQIA+ persons. We endeavour to develop and implement appropriate policies and plans to achieve gender equality and gender-equal access, and remove impediments to the advancement of women and girls and women's empowerment in this regard. We strongly condemn crimes which target people based on their gender and all forms of sexual and gender-based violence.
As we witness grave threats and challenges to the free and open international order based on the rule of law, we reaffirm the importance of multilateralism and international cooperation in promoting peace, stability and prosperity and are committed to take action to strengthen ties with key partners around the globe, including through the advancement of shared values. In this context, we reiterate the importance of a free and open Indo-Pacific, which is inclusive, prosperous, secure, based on the rule of law, and that protects shared principles including sovereignty, territorial integrity, peaceful resolution of disputes, and fundamental freedoms and human rights. We underscore our shared commitment to strengthen coordination with regional partners, including ASEAN and its Member States for the advancement of shared values. To this end, under the initiative of the Japanese G7 Presidency, we were pleased to convene, on the occasion of this G7 ministerial, the first ever ministerial meeting between ASEAN and G7 in the field of law and justice, entitled the "ASEAN-G7 Justice Ministers' Interface". We strongly welcomed this historic opportunity to meet with Justice Ministers and Attorneys General of ASEAN Member States and the ASEAN Secretary General.
We reaffirm our unwavering support for ASEAN centrality and unity and our commitment to promoting cooperation in line with the ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific, which shares fundamental principles with a Free and Open Indo-Pacific (FOIP). We intend to continue to hold dialogue with ASEAN Member States, both bilaterally and multilaterally, to discuss matters of mutual interest in the field of law and justice. In doing so, we will respect the diversity of ASEAN Member States and are committed to engaging with them towards building strong and longstanding relations.
We recognise that building such relations requires sustained constructive and meaningful engagement over the long-term. In particular, we recognise the importance of supporting the development of and cooperation among the next generation from the G7 and ASEAN Member States, including the role this plays in building mutual trust and understanding.
To this end, we welcome the initiative of the "Next Leaders Forum" initiated by Japan's G7 presidency, which will periodically bring together young, promising officials working in the field of law and justice from the respective Justice and/or other Ministries of both the G7 and ASEAN Member States. The Forum, will provide our next generation of leaders the opportunity to meet and discuss common challenges, learn from each other through the sharing of information, knowledge and best practices, and better understand how our respective legal systems, despite their differences, can promote and implement common values. We intend to make efforts to ensure that the Forum will pave the way towards future-oriented relations between the G7 and ASEAN, and will facilitate further dialogue based on shared values.
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Source: Ministry of Justice of Japan
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