Japan, US, Australia share concerns over China
Onodera held talks with US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and Australian Defense Minister Stephen Smith on Saturday in Singapore, on the sidelines of the Asia Security Summit.
After the talks the 3 countries issued a joint statement. It calls for ensuring the freedom of navigation in regional waters and promoting a peaceful resolution of any conflict based on international law.
Onodera later said the statement expressed opposition to any coercive attempts to alter the status quo. He said both Hagel and Smith support this view.
The Japanese Defense Minister expressed confidence that the 3 countries share common concerns over China's increasing maritime activities. These include frequent intrusions into Japanese territorial waters near the Senkaku Islands. The Senkakus in the East China Sea are controlled by Japan but also claimed by China and Taiwan.