Japan has offered its support to Southeast Asian nations in their fight to combat the unilateral, dangerous and coercive activities taking place in the South China Sea. The Japan Defense Minister General Nakatani, made the announcement on Saturday, June 4, 2016, according to Reuters.
The efforts were spearheaded by Tokyo’s own interests in safeguarding its national security from China’s extending influence into the East China Sea and Western Pacific. Japan’s commitment would most likely center around beefing up its security capabilities to deal with the situation. According to Nakatani, their involvement will be comprised of “large-scale and rapid land reclamation, building of outposts and utilization of them for military purposes in the South China Sea.”
Japan is worried about Chinese controlling most of the South China Sea, through which $5 trillion of global trade passes a year. The defense minister added that if they left the problem unattended it would threaten Japan’s national security. It plans to address the situation by building “defensive facilities” on its territory. Japan is also seeking to build closer military ties with Vietnam, Indonesia and other nations surrounding the South China Sea.
As far as helping its Southeast Allies such as the Philippines to deal with China’s threatening expansion is concerned, Nakatani’s country is assisting with sharpening their surveillance capabilities, conducting joint training exercises and cooperating in developing new equipment.
Written by Bashar Saajid
Edited by Cathy Milne
Reuters: Japan pledges support for Southeast Asia security to counter coercive China
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