We see historic turning point in Japan defense strategy amid Russian invasion - Ukraine's Ambassador to Japan

Ukraine's Ambassador to Japan Sergiy Korsunsky explains how this country is abandoning pacifism
Ukraine's Ambassador to Japan Sergiy Korsunsky explains how this country is abandoning pacifism

Following the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Ambassador Serhiy Korsunskyi revealed a significant shift in Japan’s defense strategy during an interview with Radio NV on April 17.

Ukrainian ambassador to Japan, Serhiy Korsunskyi, highlighted pacifist nature of Japan’s post-World War II Constitution, which denounces war as a means of resolving international disputes.

Japan’s self-defense force consists of 240.000 members, and country relies on security guarantees from the United States, maintaining air force and navy units as well as hosting US military bases. In East Asia, bilateral security agreements have traditionally formed the basis of the security system in the region.

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However, Korsunskyi noted that situation in East Asia has recently undergone significant changes. United States global position is shifting, while China has emerged and Russia has disregarded civilized norms of behavior.

North Korea’s aggressive behavior also adds some complexity. Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s tenure has seen Japan revise its strategic defense documents, including introduction of concept of a preemptive strike, which was not previously possible.

Japan’s role in international alliances has also evolved. Country is now a member of the QUAD alliance (comprising United States, India, Australia, and Japan) and US-Korea-Japan Triangle, which returned to active politics in previous year. Additionally, Japan has revised its principle of arms supply and can now provide weapons to third countries under certain conditions.

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Korsunskyi highlighted Prime Minister Kishida’s statement in US Congress, where he said that United States and Japan are global partners in creating a new international order. Furthermore, Japanese and US officials have referred to their partnership in maintaining peace and security in Indo-Pacific region.

Consequently, Japan is actively reassessing its position in the world and region, particularly regarding security issues.

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Recent reports indicate that United States, United Kingdom, and Australia are in negotiations to expand AUKUS security pact to include Japan, aiming to counter China in Indo-Pacific region. However, Britain and Australia at the moment are focused on solving problems among the member states of pact, and there are some opposition to this decision in Japan as well.

Concerns over closer military cooperation between China and Russia have also been expressed by Japanese officials, given potential security implications for Japan and region as a whole.

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As a result, Japan made plans to modernize airports and seaports to be utilized by defense and coast guard forces in emergencies. Japan’s evolving role in region and its increasing importance in security matters indicate a significant shift in its position in the world.

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Read the original article on The New Voice of Ukraine