National Security Council (Japan)
The National Security Council (国家安全保障会議 Kokka-anzen-hoshō-kaigi?) of Japan is an inter-agency body established to coordinate the national security policies of Japan. An initiative of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, the Council replaces the previous Security Council and is modeled after the United States National Security Council. It is headed by the country's National Security Advisor, currently Shotaro Yachi.
Abe first attempted to establish an NSC in his first premiership in 2006–07, but the effort stalled in January 2008 when he stepped down from office. The House of Representatives passed a bill to establish the Council on 7 November 2013, and the House of Councillors followed suit on 27 November.
The Council has its own national security advisor to the Prime Minister and is staffed by around 60 officials from the Foreign and Defense ministries. There are six teams handling various issue areas, each headed by an official equivalent to a ministerial division chief. One of its key functions is a regular conference with the Prime Minister, the cabinet secretary, and the Foreign and Defense ministers. The office has hotlines to its American and British counterparts.
Together with the publication of Japan's first National Security Strategy in December 2013, the NSC represents a centralization of Japanese security policy with the Prime Minister. The old Security Council had been beset by bureaucratic inefficiencies and lack of coordination. The National Security Strategy advocates for the creation of an NSC because "the security environment surrounding Japan is further increasing in severity. ... [I]t is necessary for the entire Cabinet to work on the strengthening of foreign affairs and the security system of Japan."
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