Japanese Defense Minister Nobuo Kishi said Friday he will hold a meeting of defense ministers with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations next week in Cambodia, part of efforts to keep close tabs on China’s growing maritime assertiveness in the region.
“This is a meaningful opportunity to exchange views on security issues in the Indo-Pacific region. I hope to promote mutual understanding and trust,” Kishi said at a press conference, adding that Japan intends to maintain and strengthen a “free and open” Indo-Pacific region.
The meeting, slated to take place during Kishi’s visit from Tuesday to Wednesday, will be the first in-person meeting between Japanese and ASEAN defense ministers since November 2019, according to the Defense Ministry.
In full: https://mainichi.jp/english/articles/20220617/p2g/00m/0na/052000c