TOKYO: Japanese Finance Minister Taro Aso said Friday he will discuss how to prevent the financing of terrorist groups with his G20 counterparts at their forthcoming Istanbul meeting.
"Two Japanese citizens were victims (of terrorism). Terrorists cannot act without funds," said Aso at a press conference.
Aso's comments came after the Islamic State sent videos Jan 24 and Feb 1 showing the beheading of two Japanese nationals it had captured in Syria and threatened to kill more Japanese citizens "wherever they are".
Before the execution of the hostages, Japan had already approved a law to freeze financial and real estate transactions by individuals and organisations involved in international terrorism, including the IS and Al Qaeda.
Aso also said in statements to Kyodo news agency that during the meeting of the heads of finance and central banks at the G20 Summit Feb 9 in Istanbul, Japan would show its gratitude to all the Middle East countries which cooperated in the attempts to free the two hostages.
In the macroeconomic field, Aso said that in Istanbul "economic recovery" in Japan would also be up for discussion thanks to the reform programme championed by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, a programme popularly known as "Abenomics".
Aso also said that he would explain his government's efforts to improve Japan's fiscal health which was the worst in the developed world with public debt more than double its GDP.