The US and Japan have agreed to advance their multilateral security and defense cooperation with countries like India, South Korea and Australia, amidst Chinas growing assertiveness in the Asia Pacific region.
Highlights of Defence Cooperation Meeting between US & Japan:
- On August 17, 2017, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson,US Defence Secretary James Mattis, Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono and Japanese Defence Minister Itsunori Onodera jointly addressed a news conference in Washington, US.
- US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson mentioned that US and Japan will cooperate to advance trilateral and multilateral security and defence cooperation with other partners in the Asia-Pacific region.
- During the meeting the ministers underscored the importance of cooperating to promote a rules-based international order, taking note of the United States continued commitment to maintain a strong presence in the region and Japans initiatives demonstrated by its “Free and Open Indo-Pacific Strategy”.
- According to the joint statement, the ministers strongly encourage China to take decisive measures to urge North Korea to change its course of action. Besides, they also confirmed the importance of the unwavering U.S. commitment to extended deterrence
- Expressing serious concern about the situation in the South China Sea, they reaffirmed their opposition to unilateral coercive actions by claimants, including the reclamation and militarisation of disputed features that alter the status quo and increase tensions.
- Reiterating the importance of the peaceful settlement of maritime disputes through full respect for legal and diplomatic processes, including arbitration, they emphasised the importance of compliance with the international law of the sea, as reflected in the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, including respect for freedom of navigation and over flight and other lawful uses of the sea.