Kishida raises security concerns in travel in Europe, US.
Japanese PM Fumio Kishida kicks off a week-long trip on Monday to build the military ties between Europe as well as Britain and to bring focus on the Japan-U.S. alliance during an event in Washington in the midst of a period when Japan moves away from its postwar restraining to assume more aggressive roles, with a focus on China.
Kishida’s meetings in the presence of U.S. President Joe Biden on Friday will be the highlight of his five-nation tour , which will take him to France, Italy, Britain and Canada — among the group of Seven nations Japan has increased its defense ties with in recent times. His first stop will be Paris on Monday night.
Kishida said that his summit together with Biden will emphasize the power of the Japan-U.S. alliance, and also how they will work together with Japan’s new security and defense plans.
Japan during December took a number of key measures to improve defense security in December, with a counter strike option that breaks from the nation’s self-defense-only postwar principle. Japan claims that the present deployment of missile interceptors is not enough to safeguard it from development of weapons within China as well as North Korea.
Kishida told reporters that he’ll be able to explain to Biden his new plan in that Japan is also strengthening the defenses of its southwest islands, close to Taiwan as well as Yonaguni and Ishigaki which are where new bases are being constructed.
“Will will discuss further strengthening of the Japan-U.S. alliance, and how we work together to achieve a fee and open Indo-Pacific,” Kishida said on an NHK talk show on national television Sunday talking about a future vision of economic and national security cooperation between the two countries. are promoting China’s growing influence on the economy and military.
In the new strategy, Japan plans to begin to deploy in 2026 longer-range cruise missiles capable of hitting possible targets in China, almost tripling its defense budget in five years, aiming for a NATO standard of 2 percent of GDP, up instead of the present 1% as well as improve cybersecurity and intelligence capabilities.
Kishida highlights security concerns on trip to Europe, US https://t.co/EHmRQBD6Dj
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The goal is to accomplish as much as you can within a short period of time. experts warn that Chinese President Xi Jingpin may take action against the self-ruled Taiwan which Beijing declares as one of their territories.
The new Japan strategy has been well-received from the Biden administration as well as some lawmakers in the Congress. Some experts believe it will increase cooperation with their principal region partners Australia and perhaps South Korea.
“This is an opportunity to rethink and update the structure and the mechanisms of the alliance to reflect a much more capable partner that’s coming,” said Christopher Johnstone, senior adviser and Japan chair of the Center for Strategic and International Studies.
However, he said that Japan’s focus on budget and the capability to strike is welcome, however it is “a daunting agenda” that will require lots of collaboration and cooperation with the United States.
To prepare to the summit, Japanese Defence Minister Yasukazu Hamada as well as Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi are scheduled to travel towards Washington to meet with their American partners, Lloyd Austin and Antony Blinken on Wednesday. This will be then, separately, talks between defense ministers on Thursday.
It is believed that the Biden administration that has adopted its security policy in October, is expecting Japan to help in the provision and storage of munitions and fuel in the event of an Taiwan emergency, according to experts. Japan as well as both the United States are also reportedly contemplating forming an inter-agency command.
At the White House, the two leaders will also discuss China and North Korea’s missile and nuclear development as well as Russia’s conflict over Ukraine, Japanese officials said.
Collaboration in the field of supply chain as well as economic security will also be on the agenda. In the last weekend, Japanese Economy and Industry Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura as well as U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo discussed in Washington the necessity of working together to advance and safeguard the most important and innovative technologies, like semiconductors as well as export controls, to address security and competitiveness issues.
While on his trip, Kishida will seek to increase the military relations between Japan and four countries, Japanese officials say.
Japan’s production and development of the F-X next-generation fighter aircraft together with Britain and Italy to be deployed in 2035 is an important topic when he visits Rome as well as London between Tuesday and Wednesday.
Japan and Britain are also talking about the possibility of a Reciprocal Access Agreement that would make it easier to hold joint military exercises within both countries. In addition to being bound by the Japan-U.S. security agreement that permits U.S. troops to station in Japan, Tokyo has a similar agreement with Australia as well, and Britain is next in line.
In his meetings in talks with French Presidency Emmanuel Macron, Kishida is likely to voice his concern about China’s expanding activities within the South Pacific and confirm stepping up joint military exercises between the two countries.