Japan to host first joint military exercise with US and France
Japan is to hold its first military drill with French and US troops in May 2021. According to Japan, the exercise is being held as it is concerned about the increasing Chinese actions in the regional waters.
About the exercise
- The exercise will be the first large scale exercise between Japan, US and France.
- The exercise is to be held at the JGSDF Kirishima training ground.
- It will include amphibious operations as well.
- The exercise has come as Japan is trying to increase its defence cooperation with the US. Japan intends to counter China’s assertiveness in the South and East China sea.
- The French Government shares the vision of free and open Indo-Pacific. France has territories in the Indian Ocean namely French Polynesia in South Pacific and French Island of Reunion in the Indian Ocean.
The US President Joe Biden and the Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga recently met at the White House. Their conversations mainly centred around “What to do about China?”. During the meet, the leaders agreed to take up issues such as China’s aggressions in East China sea and South China sea. The leaders agreed to work together to ensure a free and open Indo-Pacific. Japan has always been open that it is threatened by the vast military resources of China and its territorial disputes.
Major irritant between China and Japan
Japan is mainly concerned about the Chinese claims of Senkaku Islands. The Islands are currently administered by Japan. However, China claims the Island and calls it Diaoyu.
In South China Sea
China claims most of the South China Region, It has drawn an imaginary “Nine Dash Line”. The Chinese claim the regions of South China sea based on this line.
Nine Dash Line of China
The Nine Dash Line is a demarcation line used by China for its claim over South China Sea. In 1947, China showed a U-shaped eleven dash line in its map. Later two dashes were removed making it a nine-dash line. In 2010, China published a new map that incorporated a tenth dash. In 2013, China extended this line to the east of Taiwan and further extending it to the East China Sea.
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