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Press Release

Readout of Deputy Attorney General Lisa O. Monaco’s Trip to Tokyo for G7 and ASEAN Justice Ministers Meetings

For Immediate Release
Office of Public Affairs

Deputy Attorney General (Deputy AG) Lisa O. Monaco traveled to Tokyo July 6-8 to highlight the importance of international partnerships and support for the rule of law at a Group of Seven (G7) Justice Ministers’ Meeting and a G7 Interface Meeting with Justice Ministers and Attorneys General from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

In remarks at the ASEAN Interface on July 7, the Deputy AG emphasized the critical importance of strong international partnerships to combating intensifying global threats from cybercrime and transnational organized crime, particularly narcotics trafficking. She noted how the Justice Department’s prosecutors and investigators are working with global partners to disrupt the criminal ecosystem that allows increasingly brazen cyber criminals and malicious nation-state actors to flourish. She also encouraged her counterparts to join the Justice Department’s campaign against drug cartels that fuel violence around the world, warning that the United States is facing a deadly threat from fentanyl and other illicit synthetic drugs. She said:

“To my colleagues — I urge you to recognize that while you may not see this deadly killer now — you will. Fentanyl trafficking is a serious threat to all of us and is an area ripe for future cooperation.

In the meeting of G7 Justice Ministers, the Deputy AG reiterated her warning about fentanyl and acknowledged the steadfast commitment of G7 nations to support Ukraine and resolve to hold Russia accountable for the war crimes and atrocities it is perpetrating in its war of aggression in Ukraine. She joined G7 Justice Ministers in announcing new efforts to help Ukraine strengthen the rule of law and fight corruption, including through a new G7 Anti-Corruption Task Force for Ukraine, which the Justice Department will support as part of its continued response to Russia’s unprovoked and brutal war in Ukraine.

Pointing to the Disruptive Technology Strike Force she launched earlier this year, the Deputy AG also encouraged her G7 counterparts to work together to deny repressive regimes the technology they abuse and exploit to monitor, harass, and intimidate, warning that:

“Our adversaries are not content with the status quo — they are increasingly creative, brazen, and malicious in their efforts to weaken democracies, to sow discord, and to spread corruption across the globe. Only by defending the rule of law, protecting civil liberties, and holding fast to the values that underpin our countries can we defeat these autocratic regimes — and we can and must do these things together.”

You can read more here about the commitments made by G7 Justice Ministers to support Ukraine, enhance cooperation among the G7 nations to promote the rule of law, and connect the G7 and Indo-Pacific in the fields of law and justice.

While in Tokyo, the Deputy AG held a number of bilateral meetings, including with Justice Ministers and other counterparts from the United Kingdom, the Philippines, France, Italy, Germany, Japan, and Canada, as well as with the Executive Director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). In all of these discussions, the Deputy AG emphasized the importance of continuing to invest in international partnerships, which are key to dismantling deadly narcotics trafficking networks, disrupting cybercrime and threats like ransomware, and preventing the misuse of critical technologies by repressive regimes to undermine democracies.

Joined by U.S. Ambassador to Japan, Rahm Emanuel, the Deputy AG met with the Japanese Minister of Justice, Ken Saitō, to thank him for his leadership of the G7 Justice Ministerial and for his hospitality in Tokyo. She met separately with Deputy Commissioner General of the Japanese National Police, Yoshimi Ogata, and underscored the Justice Department’s deep appreciation for the strong collaboration with Japanese law enforcement and justice partners in combating shared global threats.

Deputy Attorney General Monaco with the G7 and ASEAN Justice Ministers and Attorneys General

Before leaving Tokyo, the Deputy AG visited the American Embassy for a briefing with U.S. officials on their work in-country and to thank them for their dedicated public service.

Deputy Attorney General Monaco with the G7 Justice Ministers
Deputy Attorney General Monaco delivers remarks at the Plenary Session of the G7 Justice Ministers’ Interface
Deputy Attorney General Monaco with the Japanese Minister of Justice Ken Saitō
Deputy Attorney General Monaco with representatives of Japan's National Police Agency
Deputy Attorney General Monaco with representatives of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime
Updated July 10, 2023

Press Release Number: 23-741