Japan, Vietnam signal defence switch deal amid China worries

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Tokyo says new deal elevates Japan-Vietnam defence partnership to a ‘new level’.

Japan and Vietnam have agreed to step up cooperation amid worries about China’s rising navy affect, inking a brand new deal that allows the export of Japanese-made defence tools and expertise to Hanoi.

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Japan’s Defence Minister Nobuo Kishi mentioned the deal, signed on Saturday, elevates the 2 nations’ defence partnership “to a new level” and that Japan and Vietnam plan to deepen defence ties by way of multinational joint workout routines and different means.

Details concerning the switch of particular tools, together with naval vessels, might be labored out in subsequent talks, the Japanese defence ministry mentioned in an announcement.

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Kishi’s assembly along with his Vietnamese counterpart, Phan Van Giang, in Hanoi coincided with a two-day go to to the Vietnamese capital by Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi.

The Chinese diplomat wrapped up his go to by saying Beijing plans to donate three million doses of its coronavirus vaccine to Vietnam. He additionally mentioned China and Vietnam ought to chorus from any unilateral actions concerning the South China Sea that would complicate the state of affairs and enlarge disagreements.

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Vietnam has territorial disputes with China over the Spratly and Paracel island teams within the South China Sea.

In a veiled reference to China’s more and more assertive actions within the disputed waters, Japan’s Defence Ministry mentioned Kishi and Giang agreed on the significance of sustaining freedom of navigation and overflight within the Indo-Pacific area, in addition to cooperation in numerous defence areas together with cybersecurity.

The ministry mentioned Kishi expressed Japan’s robust opposition to “any unilateral attempts to change the status quo by coercion or any activities that escalate tensions”.

Japan and China are additionally embroiled in a territorial dispute, with Tokyo frequently protesting the Chinese coast guard’s presence within the East China Sea near the Japanese-controlled Senkaku islands, which Beijing additionally claims and calls Diaoyu. Japanese officers say Chinese vessels routinely violate Japanese territorial waters across the islands, generally threatening fishing boats.

Vietnam is the 11th nation with which Japan has signed a defence tools and expertise switch deal.

Tokyo is seeking to increase navy cooperation past its longtime ally the United States, and has signed comparable agreements with the United Kingdom, Australia, the Philippines and Indonesia.

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