Japan Today
Press Conference by Japan's Prime Minister Fumio Kishida
Japan's Prime Minister Fumio Kishida speaks during a press conference at the prime minister's office in Tokyo, Japan, June 21, 2024. FRANCK ROBICHON/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo Image: Reuters/FRANCK ROBICHON
politics

Japan must strengthen NATO ties to safeguard global peace, PM says

61 Comments
By Yukiko Toyoda, John Geddie

Russia's deepening military cooperation with North Korea has underlined the need for Japan to forge closer ties with NATO as regional security threats become increasingly intertwined, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida told Reuters.

In written remarks ahead of his attendance at a NATO summit in Washington DC this week, Kishida also signalled concern over Beijing's alleged role in aiding Moscow's two-year-old war in Ukraine, although he did not name China.

"The securities of the Euro-Atlantic and the Indo-Pacific are inseparable, and Russia’s aggression against Ukraine and its deepened military cooperation with North Korea are strong reminders of that," Kishida said.

"Japan is determined to strengthen its cooperation with NATO and its partners," he added.

The world, the Japanese leader said, should not tolerate attempts by some countries to disrupt the established international order and reiterated a warning that Ukraine today could be East Asia tomorrow. He also urged cooperation to confront new security threats that transcend geographical boundaries, such as cyber-attacks and conflicts in space.

South Korea, Australia and New Zealand, which along with Japan are known as the Indo-Pacific Four (IP4), are also attending the July 10-11 meeting with NATO leaders.

South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol told Reuters this week that he planned to discuss the threat Pyongyang poses to Europe by deepening its Russia ties.

North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un signed a mutual defence pledge with Russia last month during President Valdimir Putin's first visit to Pyongyang in 24 years, and expressed his "full support" for Russia's war in Ukraine.

The U.S. and its allies have accused Pyongyang of providing ballistic missiles and artillery shells that Russia has used in its war in Ukraine and say they fear Moscow in return could provide support for North Korea's nuclear missile development.

Washington has also said China is supplying drone and missile technology, satellite imagery and machine tools to Russia, items which fall short of lethal assistance but are helping Moscow build its military to sustain the Ukraine war. Beijing has said it has not provided any weaponry to any party.

Without naming China, Kishida told Reuters "some countries" have allegedly transferred dual-use civilian-military goods to Russia which has served "as a lifeline" for its Ukraine war.

"It is necessary to grapple with such situations in a multi-faceted and strategic manner, taking a panoramic view that considers the full range of international actors fuelling Russia’s attempt to change the status quo by force," he said.

"The geographical boundary of 'Euro-Atlantic' or 'Indo-Pacific' is no longer relevant in safeguarding global peace and security. Japan and Indo-Pacific partners can play a great role for NATO allies from this perspective."

Constrained by decades of pacifism, Tokyo has been reluctant to supply lethal aid to Ukraine.

It has, however, provided financial aid to Kyiv, spearheaded efforts to prepare for its post-war reconstruction, and contributed to NATO’s fund to provide Ukraine with non-lethal equipment such as anti-drone detection systems.

Tokyo has also repeatedly warned about the risks of a similar conflict emerging in East Asia, where China has been taking an increasingly muscular stance towards its territorial claims including the democratic island of Taiwan.

"This summit is a critical opportunity for Japan, the U.S., and the other NATO allies to confront the ongoing challenges against the international order and to reaffirm values and principles that have shaped global peace and prosperity," he said.

There may be limits, however, over how far NATO members are prepared to go in forging closer ties in Asia. A plan that surfaced last year for NATO to open a liaison office in Japan, its first in Asia, was blocked by France and criticised by China.

© (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2024.

©2024 GPlusMedia Inc.

61 Comments

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Chinese can sense cowardice in Japan leadership,they know they could use psychological coercion against Japanese leaders being straight up cowards,not manning up

-24 ( +5 / -29 )

Kishida is being dishonest. Russia had not moved its border further west one inch from 1991 to 2014 when a certain country was hijacked by a western backed coup. Moscow launched a full-scale strategic counteroffensive, defensive in nature, after effectively being lied to for eight years and a list of provocations before that. Surely Kishida knows the NATO-orchestrated Georgian War of 2008 was the first direct clash between a Western proxy and the Russian on the territory of the former Soviet Union; that was the Rubicon crossed and the current conflict is a scaled-up version of that but for the exact same reasons.

-8 ( +16 / -24 )

Japan, stay out of entanglements you have no business being in. Just watch out for the threat in your own backyard.

-8 ( +13 / -21 )

There is no "global peace". It's just code for American hegemony. Kishida is conspicuously quiet about Gaza and other conflicts (or massacres) western and Japanese big business are actively contributing to.

-1 ( +15 / -16 )

Remember this headline, when the missiles start flying in the Asia Pacific in the near future.

-10 ( +5 / -15 )

Russia has turned out to be a paper Tiger….

Their Black Sea Fleet was rendered ineffective by a country with no navy.

The European arm of their Air Force couldn’t even gain air superiority over a country they had a 10-15x numerical advantage over who was using near obsolete aircraft for defense.

There are more Soviet era ships rusting away in Vladivostok than ships that are sea worthy for the Russian Navy.

Nukes are the only worry…

4 ( +15 / -11 )

JJE

Kishida is being dishonest. Russia had not moved its border further west one inch from 1991 to 2014

You are forgetting Georgia. Russia took territory in Georgia.

when a certain country was hijacked by a western backed coup.

There was no coup.

Moscow launched a full-scale strategic counteroffensive, defensive in nature,

It was certainly not defensive, it was an annexation of sovereign territory.

after effectively being lied to for eight years and a list of provocations before that. Surely Kishida knows the NATO-orchestrated Georgian War of 2008

Russian, not NATO.

2 ( +14 / -12 )

JJEToday  07:29 am JST

Kishida is being dishonest. Russia had not moved its border further west one inch from 1991 to 2014 when a certain country was hijacked by a western backed coup.

And that is supposed to make everything ok, that Russia did its illegal activity from 2014 onwards? And yes, Russia's puppets were brought down by mighty US baseball bats.

Moscow launched a full-scale strategic counteroffensive, defensive in nature, after effectively being lied to for eight years and a list of provocations before that.

Annexations are only defensive in nature to the diseased mind of the Russian. No lie will ever top, "there will be no invasion".

Surely Kishida knows the NATO-orchestrated Georgian War of 2008 was the first direct clash between a Western proxy and the Russian on the territory of the former Soviet Union; that was the Rubicon crossed and the current conflict is a scaled-up version of that but for the exact same reasons.

The reason is Putin's monstrous megalomania. All he could do was Georgia in 2008. All he could do was Crimea and the Donbas in 2014. Time to make sure that diseased bear finally expires with trying to take all of Ukraine in 2024.

0 ( +13 / -13 )

 It's just code for American hegemony

I don’t know where you live, but I’m happy with “American hegemony”: Japan, Singapore, Thailand, S. Korea, Taiwan, etc. Pretty good places to live, I’d say.

But if you disagree, you could always try re-locating to the places most free of American hegemony: China, Myanmar, N. Korea, Russia, Belarus, Iran. Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.

0 ( +11 / -11 )

YotomayaToday  07:52 am JST

There is no "global peace". It's just code for American hegemony. 

If you can't win the peace, you aren't playing the game right.

2 ( +13 / -11 )

RF has not annexed one square inch of territory from anyone between 1991 and 2014 - including Georgia. This is a fact. Indeed, no Georgian territory has been incorporated into the RF at all.

Annexations can be defensive. Look at Hawaii. They beat the others to the punch just like Crimea in 2014. Many other examples of this type of conduct.

-8 ( +8 / -16 )

""Russia's deepening military cooperation with North Korea has underlined the need for Japan to forge closer ties with NATO as regional security threats become increasingly intertwined, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida told Reuters.""

Now that you explained I AGREE.

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

It's obvious there's pro Russian or Russian posters on this site.

7 ( +15 / -8 )

@JeffLee

"There are worse places to live. Therefore, being an American ally is good."

"If you don't like it, leave."

These are two fallacies ignoring that geopolitics isn't one-dimensional and that life in the places you mention is "good" only thanks to rampant exploitation within and without of its borders.

0 ( +9 / -9 )

JJEToday  08:36 am JST

RF has not annexed one square inch of territory from anyone between 1991 and 2014 - including Georgia. This is a fact. Indeed, no Georgian territory has been incorporated into the RF at all.

Again that magical date. Russia has committed zero homicides in Europe before 2014 you say?

Annexations can be defensive. Look at Hawaii.

Nothing defensive about it, but we aren't in the 19th century anymore.

They beat the others to the punch just like Crimea in 2014. Many other examples of this type of conduct.

And all examples of Russian barbarism.

-1 ( +10 / -11 )

""Russia's deepening military cooperation with North Korea has underlined the need for Japan to forge closer ties with NATO as regional security threats become increasingly intertwined, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida told Reuters.""

Humm!!! Agree.

But One should ask???

Why Did Russia do what it did and allied it self with the Devil, that needs to be resolved and Russia will probably back off.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

JJE

RF has not annexed one square inch of territory from anyone between 1991 and 2014 - including Georgia. This is a fact. Indeed, no Georgian territory has been incorporated into the RF at all.

Instead, they established Abkhazia and South Ossetia and ensured they had puppets in both.

0 ( +8 / -8 )

WoodyLee

But One should ask???

Why Did Russia do what it did and allied it self with the Devil, that needs to be resolved and Russia will probably back off.

They started an imperialist war of aggression in Ukraine and bit off more than they can chew.

1 ( +10 / -9 )

" when a certain country was hijacked by a western backed coup..............There was no coup."

Lol, bringing out that ole NAFO misinformation chestnut again? Yes there certainly was a coup , the violent Maidan event fits the Oxford, Cambridge etc. definition of a coup perfectly " a sudden, often violent, unlawful seizure of power from a government:" If you claim Maidan was not a coup provide proof how it did not fit the above coup definition.

-6 ( +7 / -13 )

Ramsey's Kitchen

There was no coup."

Lol, bringing out that ole NAFO misinformation chestnut again? Yes there certainly was a coup , the violent Maidan event fits the Oxford, Cambridge etc. definition of a coup perfectly " a sudden, often violent, unlawful seizure of power from a government:" 

If you claim Maidan was not a coup provide proof how it did not fit the above coup definition.

There was no seizure of government.

1 ( +9 / -8 )

RF did not "establish" any such thing.

Abkhazia and South Ossetia existed before the RF even existed you know... long before.

-3 ( +9 / -12 )

JJEToday  09:18 am JST

RF did not "establish" any such thing.

Abkhazia and South Ossetia existed before the RF even existed you know... long before.

But under the control of Tbilisi before Russia's illegal invasion of that country.

1 ( +11 / -10 )

It's obvious there's pro Russian or Russian posters on this site.

You mean posters who don't swallow Washington / Brussels propaganda hook, line and sinker? Dont worry they are far outnumbered by the NATO crowd on here. You can rest easily.

-2 ( +10 / -12 )

Yes there certainly was a coup , the violent Maidan event fits the Oxford, Cambridge etc. definition of a coup perfectly " a sudden, often violent, unlawful seizure of power from a government:"  If you claim Maidan was not a coup provide proof how it did not fit the above coup definition.

There was no seizure of government."

Lol, sure there wasn't. Guess we are just supposed to take your word for it. OK then ;)

-3 ( +8 / -11 )

Negative - suggest brush up on history.

Tblisi never had control of them (the former of the two actually enjoyed autonomy as the Abkhaz Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic).

-6 ( +6 / -12 )

Negative - suggest brush up on history.

Tblisi never had control of them (the former of the two actually enjoyed autonomy as the Abkhaz Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic).

-6 ( +5 / -11 )

@badhairct:  Just watch out for the threat in your own backyard.

It's roughly 2 kilometers from Hokkaido to Kamchatka, recall a Moscow regime wanted larger bites of Japan. And the current Kremlin boss wants to add even more territory plus an educated and talented Japanese population that he can say he personally controls. Russian imperialism backed by China's, another imperialist wannabe in Japan's backyard, make Japan under threat, and then you add in North Korea in Japan's backyard, and it's easy to see why some here are wary.

-3 ( +8 / -11 )

Ramsey's Kitchen

There was no seizure of government."

Lol, sure there wasn't. Guess we are just supposed to take your word for it. OK then ;)

No. Check for yourself. And post evidence of seizure of government.

0 ( +9 / -9 )

Kishida has imperialist territorial ambitions of his own. He wants to annex the Kuril Islands which are UN recognized sovereign territory of the Russian Federation.

He should stop the sabre rattling himself and observe international law.

-5 ( +8 / -13 )

JJEToday  09:34 am JST

Kishida has imperialist territorial ambitions of his own. He wants to annex the Kuril Islands which are UN recognized sovereign territory of the Russian Federation.

He should stop the sabre rattling himself and observe international law.

You mean the territory extralegally occupied by Russia? Sources that the UN recognizes Russian occupation or it didn't happen.

2 ( +11 / -9 )

Notice when they say in the media, whether it be a government or semi-govt body they are quoting, they mention Crimea and Donbass as "illegally occupied/annexed/non UMN recognized" etc but never the same about the Kuril Islands (except Japan and a few vassals and the cartel boss) - no other countries see it that way. Even Japan doesn't go that far to argue against the actual UN.

How odd.

-6 ( +6 / -12 )

Stop doing silly things, you are not and will not be NATO, besides, why join a group of losers, who have lost their relevance in the world and who still believe that they are living in the era of the Cold War...

Focus in your OWN country problems...

-1 ( +10 / -11 )

TokyoLivingToday  09:55 am JST

Stop doing silly things, you are not and will not be NATO, besides, why join a group of losers, who have lost their relevance in the world and who still believe that they are living in the era of the Cold War...

If the US isn't relevant, China can take their island anytime. They don't because they are SCARED of the consequence.

0 ( +11 / -11 )

Japan must strengthen NATO ties to safeguard global peace, PM says

Anyone else getting sick-n-tired of this constant MSM war propaganda drumbeat?

It's everyday day now.

0 ( +10 / -10 )

JJEToday  09:54 am JST

Notice when they say in the media, whether it be a government or semi-govt body they are quoting, they mention Crimea and Donbass as "illegally occupied/annexed/non UMN recognized" etc but never the same about the Kuril Islands (except Japan and a few vassals and the cartel boss) - no other countries see it that way. Even Japan doesn't go that far to argue against the actual UN.

How odd.

Still waiting on those sources that the UN explicitly recognizes the Kuril occupation.

0 ( +9 / -9 )

https://www.un.org/geospatial/content/russian-federation

Here is the UN's official map of the Russian Federation from their website.

Notice the Kuril Islands are shaded in the same color as the rest of Russia (and in a different color to Japan).

This is proof the Kuril Islands are UN-recognized territory of the RF.

-4 ( +9 / -13 )

*surely...

Damn keyboard, LOL..

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

The UN does not recognize the four Southern Kuriles as being Russian. That is total hogwash.

The US, UK and EU consider them to be Japanese territory under Russian administration(occupation).

0 ( +9 / -9 )

Yes, it does. Look at the UN's own map (website above includes two maps).

It doesn't matter that certain quarters have changed their tune for contemporary reasons.

-4 ( +7 / -11 )

"Lol, sure there wasn't. Guess we are just supposed to take your word for it. OK then ;)

No. Check for yourself. And post evidence of seizure of government."

Ah, the whataboutism chestnut. I already posted the Oxford / Cambridge definition of a coup and as youwell know- Maidan fits it perfectly. The provision of proof how Maidan doesn't fit the said definition is on you. But you cant provide it, because it was a coup. Simples. The end.

-1 ( +9 / -10 )

Reading the comments above it seems most are from people taken in by the media narrative about Ukraine. Note how there are almost never any articles which attempt to explain what has been happening over the last 30 years or even accurately present the Russian viewpoint. That is a feature of propaganda.

1 ( +11 / -10 )

Ukraine today could be East Asia tomorrow.

This is exactly right. Luckily, Xi knows that the free world's response (military and economic) to a Taiwan invasion/blockade will be utterly devastating to China: we need to keep it that way so that he never moves. (Also, luckily the PLA is rotten with corruption and completely untested, which further complicates Xi's dreams of conquest.)

However, Xi is a brutal dictator, and brutal dictators sometimes do stupid things (cf. Putin's disastrous Ukraine folly), so we cannot relax our guard.

"The geographical boundary of 'Euro-Atlantic' or 'Indo-Pacific' is no longer relevant in safeguarding global peace and security.

Also exactly right. East Asian countries (China, North Korea) are fueling Russia's war machine right now. Russia (and Iran) may aid their future aggression in East Asia, depending on how well/badly it recovers from Putin's disastrous Ukraine folly.

The pro-authoritarians always attempt to delink these regions/events, both in official discourse and via their internet trolls. But that is because cooperation among free world countries (particularly with the world's premier military force, NATO) is what scares them the most.

-2 ( +7 / -9 )

JJEToday 07:29 am JST

Kishida is being dishonest. Russia had not moved its border further west one inch from 1991 to 2014 when a certain country was hijacked by a western backed coup. Moscow launched a full-scale strategic counteroffensive, defensive in nature, after effectively being lied to for eight years and a list of provocations before that. Surely Kishida knows the NATO-orchestrated Georgian War of 2008 was the first direct clash between a Western proxy and the Russian on the territory of the former Soviet Union; that was the Rubicon crossed and the current conflict is a scaled-up version of that but for the exact same reasons.

Word-for-word Kremlin propaganda, rooted not in facts or history, but in Putin's warped view of reality.

In short, exactly what I expected to find here from you.

TheRegulatorToday 10:32 am JST

Reading the comments above it seems most are from people taken in by the media narrative about Ukraine. Note how there are almost never any articles which attempt to explain what has been happening over the last 30 years or even accurately present the Russian viewpoint. That is a feature of propaganda.

There are plenty of articles on Putin's viewpoint (and for longer than 30 years), and we all know what that viewpoint is: "NATO expansion," "color revolutions," "Ukraine is really part of Russia," etc.

The problem is that Putin's viewpoint is based on a warped view of reality, as stated above. It is pushing that warped view of reality that is propaganda.

-4 ( +7 / -11 )

JJEToday  09:59 am JST

https://www.un.org/geospatial/content/russian-federation

Here is the UN's official map of the Russian Federation from their website.

Notice the Kuril Islands are shaded in the same color as the rest of Russia (and in a different color to Japan). 

This is proof the Kuril Islands are UN-recognized territory of the RF.

Pretty flimsy proof if you ask me. I bet Japan could get that taken down if it was anywhere near aggressive enough.

0 ( +10 / -10 )

TheRegulatorToday  10:32 am JST

Reading the comments above it seems most are from people taken in by the media narrative about Ukraine. Note how there are almost never any articles which attempt to explain what has been happening over the last 30 years or even accurately present the Russian viewpoint. That is a feature of propaganda.

Note how there is no acknowledgment that Russia's invasion is illegal six ways from Sunday from certain quarters.

1 ( +10 / -9 )

No! It will only lead to trouble for Japan.

NATO is not a defensive organization. It is offensive; used by the US to maintain its hegemony.

I suspect Kishida is being pressured by the US to contribute to NATO's activities.

Japan should stay away from NATO, and instead improve its ties with Russia.

-2 ( +11 / -13 )

It's obvious there's pro Russian or Russian posters on this site.

It's obvious there's pro Neocon posters on this site.

0 ( +10 / -10 )

Having grown up with a menacing USSR, I think I would trust it more than the current Russian autocracy. It's always surprising some people will defend it. Nobody really believes they - or Putin - can be trusted. He's a rat. Even if the US has its own interests in mind too, well they overlap more with Japanese intentions than Russian ones do. If I were Japan, of course I would be suspicious of Russia and China and North Korea and would seek defensive alliances with them in mind.

2 ( +8 / -6 )

Falling population.

Many places in Suzu city still don't have water from the earthquake on January 1st. The water in my own home in Noto cho was just restored early last month.

Still many house still damaged in Noto.

Wajima still looks like some cities in my home country at the end of the second world war.

Inflation

Yen rate is at its lowest in years to the Euro and the Dollar

Make your country stronger first before you go off playing the fiddle around the world as Japan burns.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

There is no room for trust in Russia, which unilaterally abrogated the Japan-Soviet Neutrality Declaration and invaded Japan, and it was the Russian government that unilaterally seized Sakhalin II.

There is no country in the West that trusts Russia; it is simply an invader and an enemy country. It is only natural that Japan would cooperate with NATO.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

Japan must strengthen NATO ties to safeguard global peace,

That is so misguided, I am speechless. NATO (remember, the NA stands for North Atlantic, not Pacific) was the counterpart to the Warsaw Pact and should have been dissolved together with that when Soviet Union was dismantled, as so many people in my generation fully expected.

Instead, NATO has turned into a vehicle for US military adventures in Serbia, Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, Libya etc etc. And Kishida wants to join THAT?

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

ZaphodToday  02:57 am JST

Japan must strengthen NATO ties to safeguard global peace,

That is so misguided, I am speechless. NATO (remember, the NA stands for North Atlantic, not Pacific) was the counterpart to the Warsaw Pact and should have been dissolved together with that when Soviet Union was dismantled, as so many people in my generation fully expected.

Russia is clearly a threat. Shape changing to a different name changes nothing.

Instead, NATO has turned into a vehicle for US military adventures in Serbia, Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, Libya etc etc. And Kishida wants to join THAT?

NATO wasn't involved in Iraq or Syria. Libya was with UN mandate and Afghanistan was a legal war against terrorism. The war we are currently on is Russia's illegal invasion of Ukraine.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

You make peace by talking to your enemies, not your friends. Desmond Tutu.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

dbsaiyaToday  06:35 am JST

You make peace by talking to your enemies, not your friends. Desmond Tutu.

Russia and China can make peace with a Japan in NATO.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Constrained by decades of pacifism, Tokyo has been reluctant to supply lethal aid to Ukraine.

Look!

Japan has never had such a golden age and the people have lived in peace for well over 80 years.

Japan has no business in Europe supporting military action.

Better to remain neutral. You

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

It looks like it's time to choose a side. Do you want to be in the camp that includes North Kore, Iran, China and Russia, or do you want to be with NATO, North America and the other democracies around the globe? North Korea?! Ugh! Who would want to be in their camp?!

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Japans leaders will do what they believe is in Japans best interests, and work to keeping Japan safe. NATO and other aligned alliances are supporting peace, security and order which appeals to Japan and a majority of the region and the world.

It makes good sense to cosy up to like minded democracies against those few autocratic led countries that want anarchy and dissorder, that they control by fear and conflict. Japan loves its peaceful existance, so makes moves to enable that to continue.

I hope that in time NATO will morph into a world wide alliance, from the regional one it has been.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Russia and China can make peace with a Japan in NATO.

It would be best for Japan to not be associated with NATO since they are actively attacking Russia.

Japan should remain neutral and maintain friendly ties with both sides.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

I hope that in time NATO will morph into a world wide alliance, from the regional one it has been.

LOL

Yeah, doesn’t matter, regional or world wide, nato will go looking for or create their own enemy’s, just as in Russia, to justify their useless existence.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

It would be best for Japan to not be associated with NATO since they are actively attacking Russia.

Spouting obvious lies like that do nothing but discredit your posts. Russia is invading Ukraine for territorial gain.

No other nations are fighting Russia, least of all NATO.

You may as well say NK, Iran and China are attacking Ukraine. They are providing assistance and weapons for Russia's invasion, as NATO and others provide assistance and weapons for Ukraine to defend itself from Russia. Nothing more. Russia is the bad guy in this conflict. Something it did all on its own for its own benefit.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

It would be best for Japan to not be associated with NATO since they are actively attacking Russia.

> Japan should remain neutral and maintain friendly ties with both sides.

Which morning paper do you read?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

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