Japan Lists China As Bigger Threat Than North Korea

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TOKYO (Reuters)  - China’s growing military might has replaced North Korean belligerence as the main security threat to Japan, Tokyo’s annual defence review indicated on Thursday, despite signs that Pyongyang could have nuclear-tipped ballistic missiles.


The document’s security assessment on China comes after a section on Japan’s ally, the United States, the first time Beijing has achieved second place in the Defence White Paper and pushing North Korea into third position. Russia, deemed by Japan as its primary threat during the Cold War, was in fourth place.

“The reality is that China is rapidly increasing military spending, and so people can grasp that we need more pages,” Defence Minister Taro Kono said at a media briefing. “China is deploying air and sea assets in the Western Pacific and through the Tsushima Strait into the Sea of Japan with greater frequency.” China’s Foreign Ministry expressed displeasure with the report. China will not accept Japan’s “groundless criticism” of its normal national defence and military activities, spokesman Geng Shuang said at a press briefing in Beijing.

Japan has raised defence spending by a tenth over the past seven years to counter military advances by Beijing and Pyongyang, including defences against North Korean missiles which may carry nuclear warheads, the paper said. North Korea has conducted short-range missile launches this year that Tokyo believes show Pyongyang is developing projectiles to evade its Aegis ballistic missile defences ...



Edited by DayTrader

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