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HomeUncategorizedJapan, Philippines start talks to possible agreement in strengthening military defense

Japan, Philippines start talks to possible agreement in strengthening military defense


Japan and the Philippines agreed on Saturday to begin talks on a possible defense agreement that would allow their militaries to work more closely together in the face of regional tensions with China and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Japan and the Philippines have agreed to begin formal discussions on a possible reciprocal access agreement. Such an agreement would allow their troops to visit each other’s countries for training and to exchange defense equipment.

According to the Associated Press, it is the first so-called “2+2” security meeting between the two countries. Japan and the Philippines, both US allies, have increased joint exercises and defense cooperation in recent years. Tokyo and Manila agreed in 2020 to sell Japanese air radar systems to the Philippine military.

The top Chinese maritime ministers have called for a “rules-based approach” to resolving territorial disputes in the East and South China Seas. They also stated that Russia’s aggression in Ukraine has an impact not only on Europe but also on Asia under the international order, which does not accept unilateral changes to internationally recognized borders by force. Despite the fact that it was clear that China was their primary concern, they avoided naming the country.

“We agreed that it’s timely to look into the possibility of further expanding our defense cooperation and activities” and to explore ways to conduct capacity and capability building activity “to address issues of mutual concern,” Lorenzana told a joint news conference after the talks.

It is the first such meeting between the two countries since Japan signed a defense cooperation pact with Australia in January. Japan has concerns about China’s assertion of its territorial claims in the South China Sea.

Japan and China have been locked in an increasingly tense territorial standoff in the South China Sea for decades. Japan is especially concerned about Chinese military and coast guard activity in the East China Sea near the Japanese-controlled Senkaku islands, which China also claims. The Philippines, Vietnam, Taiwan, Malaysia and Brunei are also involved in the dispute.

According to China’s official Xinhua News Agency, Chinese President Xi Jinping told outgoing Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on Saturday that Beijing and Manila handled their South China Sea disputes properly and that “regional security cannot be achieved by strengthening military alliances.”

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