On top of maritime disputes between Japan and China, the latter’s continuous military buildup worries world leaders and diplomats. During a Bloomberg Government breakfast on Tuesday in Washington, Kenichiro Sasae, Japan’s Ambassador to the US, referred to China’s “provocative” presence in the East and South China seas as “harassing.” Japan, with the US’ support, had even urged China to “restrain” from its relentless disposal.
A resolution proposed by the United States strongly criticizes China's actions regarding the ongoing territorial dispute with Japan over the Senkakus, or Diaoyu Islands. A similar resolution is also being proposed in the House of Representatives, following a summit between US President Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping last weekend.
Japan's Ministry of Defense is keen to create a special assault team fully equipped to fortify remote islands and recapture them should an invasion occur. The ministry finds the current forces not enough to respond to amphibious attacks, which are most likely to come from its neighbor China. The plan was revealed during a meeting of the Liberal Democratic Party.
In a phone call on Wednesday, US President Barack Obama and Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe discussed several issues, including the stability of East Asia despite the territorial disputes between the countries in the region. This comes after Obama's meeting over the weekend with Chinese President Xi Jinping.
Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said on Monday that Japan and the United States do not differ in their stance toward the Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea. The Japanese government's top spokesman made his comments after United States President Barack Obama asked Chinese President Xi Jinping in their meetings to strive for de-escalation in its territorial dispute with Japan, a dispute whose existence Tokyo indignantly refuses to acknowledge.
Chinese President Xi Jinping recently flew to the United States to have informal talks with President Barack Obama regarding issues surrounding East Asia. China’s estranged relationship with Japan because of both countries’ claim of the Senkaku Islands, which China calls Diaoyu, was included in both leaders' agenda. A top White House official said Saturday that President Obama impelled President Xi to de-escalate China’s territorial disputes with Japan.
United States and Japanese troops are set to begin their scheduled joint military exercises in the next two weeks as part of plans to strengthen Tokyo's amphibious assault capabilities, as well as to improve its response system to crises like earthquakes, tsunamis, etc. The troops converged over the weekend in California's southern coast and is scheduled to begin on Tuesday.
Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou believes that Beijing, Taipei and Tokyo should put aside their differences over the territorial dispute over the Senkaku/Diaoyu/Diaoyutai islands and instead form trilateral talks to focus on the development of the island's resources. He emphasized, “A peaceful resolution to the dispute will only benefit us all.”
United States President Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping will meet in California later this week aiming to settle maritime issues in the Asia-Pacific region. According to a senior US officer, the US-China summit will particularly focus on the territorial disputes over the Senkaku Islands. Concerns involving North Korea’s nuclear and missile programs will also be regarded by both leaders.