Japan, U.S. Defense Chiefs to Meet in Guam on Aug. 29

Politics

Tokyo, Aug. 20 (Jiji Press)--Japanese Defense Minister Taro Kono and U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper will hold talks in Guam on Aug. 29, according to Japanese government sources.

They will discuss Japan's new missile defense program that will replace the abandoned plan to deploy Aegis Ashore land-based missile interceptors in the Asian country.

Kono and Esper are also expected to exchange opinions on China's expansion of military activities in the South China Sea and the East China Sea, the sources said. In addition, they are likely to confirm the policy that Japan and the United States will promote cooperation with countries that support the vision for a free and open Indo-Pacific region.

Kono will be the second Japanese cabinet minister to make an overseas trip since the new coronavirus outbreak accelerated in March, after Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi.

Kono will visit Guam aboard a Self-Defense Force jet. He will be exempt from Japan's mandatory two-week quarantine upon his return to the country if he is found negative for the novel coronavirus in a polymerase chain reaction test.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press