Japan’s new Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said Tuesday he has received a “strong” message from President Joe Biden about the United States’ commitment to protecting the disputed East China Sea islands known as the Senkaku Islands in Japan. .
Kishida told reporters at the prime minister’s official residence that the allies also reaffirmed their cooperation to achieve a free and open Indo-Pacific region in the phone talks that lasted about 20 minutes on Tuesday morning.
A day later Kishida called parliamentary elections on October 31 and vowed to strengthen the country’s response to the pandemic. He was voted on Monday by lawmakers as the country’s new prime minister.
“We have confirmed that we will work together to strengthen the Japan-US alliance and keep the Indo-Pacific free and open,” Kishida said. “We also confirmed that we will work together on issues related to China and North Korea.”
In particular, the President made strong remarks on America’s commitment to the defense of Japan, including Article 5 of the US-Japan Security Treaty, Kishida said, referring to US defense obligations to Japan.
Japan has become increasingly concerned about Chinese activities in the East China Sea, including incursions into the waters around the disputed islands, known in China as the Diayus.
Kishida also said that the two partners have agreed to work together on global issues such as the coronavirus pandemic, climate change and nuclear proliferation.
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