Japan Opens Defense Hotline with ASEAN
Tokyo, March 15 (Jiji Press)--Japan and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations agreed Wednesday to start the operation of a hotline between their defense authorities.
The agreement, reached at a vice-ministerial meeting in Tokyo, made Japan the first country to have such a hotline with ASEAN.
The Japanese Defense Ministry wants close security ties with ASEAN member states in view of China's aggressive moves in the South and East China Seas, people familiar with the regional situation said.
In 2017, ASEAN set up a permanent defense hotline for its member states. It is calling on non-member countries to take part as well.
The day's meeting was attended by Japanese Vice Defense Minister for International Affairs Masami Oka and his counterparts from nine ASEAN countries other than Myanmar.
[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]