U.S., JAPAN TO ANNOUNCE EXPANDED SECURITY PACT

Washington Times on April 24, 2015, reported that U.S. officials plan a “major announcement” April 27on expanding defense cooperation with Japan, White Houses aides said. Excerpts below:

Defense Secretary Ashton Carter and Secretary of State John F. Kerry will make the announcement in New York with their Japanese counterparts ahead of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s official state visit to the White House on April 28.

The two nations are expected to expand the areas of defense cooperation under new guidelines that cover Japan’s outlying islands.

The Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea, which are at the center of a territorial dispute with China, are to be included among Japan’s islands covered for defense.

Comment: This is a very important step to help protect Japan from Chinese attempts to take over Japanese territory. Growing Chinese aggression against neighbor states in Asia is a concern. The Obama administration has not done enough in what is called the Pivot to Asia. There is a growing risk of Chines-Russian co-operation in order to to lessen American influence in the rimland of Asia.

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