TOKYO, May 26 (Reuters) – China’s drive to create a
Beijing-led Asian development bank seen as a threat to U.S. and
Japanese regional clout is adding to a sense of urgency among
Japanese officials keen to get a 12-nation pan-Pacific trade
pact off the ground.
Japan hopes the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) will help
anchor ally Washington in Asia and create a rule-based regime
that would eventually draw in China. Beijing, for its part, is
seeking to reshape Asia’s economic architecture with
institutions such as the new Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank
TOKYO, May 21 (Reuters) – Japan unveiled a plan on Thursday
to provide $110 billion in aid for Asian infrastructure
projects, as China prepares to launch a new institutional lender
that is seen as encroaching on the regional financial clout of
Tokyo and its ally Washington.
The amount of Japanese funds, to be invested over 5 years,
tops the expected $100 billion capitalisation of the Asian
Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), the Beijing-sponsored
lender scheduled to begin operations next year.
TOKYO (Reuters) – More than 450 mostly Western scholars have signed a letter urging Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to confront boldly Japan’s wartime past, the latest sign that the conservative leader has not erased concern that he wants to dilute past apologies.
During a high-profile trip to the United States last month, Abe expressed “repentance” over Japan’s role in World War Two in a speech to Congress. But the scholars’ letter suggests his public contrition has not eased foreign misgivings.
TOKYO (Reuters) – A potential ally for Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s drive to revise the post-war, pacifist constitution – and one of Japan’s most colourful politicians – has said he’ll leave politics after his party suffered defeat in a local referendum.
Osaka Mayor Toru Hashimoto, founder of Japan’s second largest opposition party and perhaps best known abroad for his 2013 comments that appeared to excuse Japan’s “comfort women” system of wartime military brothels, said late on Sunday that he would leave politics when his term as mayor expires in December.
TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan’s cabinet approved on Thursday bills to implement a drastic shift in security policy allowing the military to fight abroad for the first time since World War Two, although the public is divided and wary over the changes.
The planned changes, reflected in new U.S.-Japan defense guidelines unveiled last month, set the stage for Japan to play a bigger role in the bilateral alliance as Tokyo and Washington face challenges such as China’s growing military assertiveness.
TOKYO (Reuters) – Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s ruling party wants to revise Japan’s constitution by late 2018 to remove constraints on his defense strategy, a key party lawmaker said, an ambitious target since the charter has not been changed since Americans drafted it after World War Two.
Abe has already stretched the post-war pacifist constitution with a dramatic shift in security policy that ends a ban on Japan’s military fighting overseas.
TOKYO (Reuters) – Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will send a clear message to the United States when he visits Washington next week: Japan is ready to take more responsibility for security on the world stage.
Behind that message, the conservative leader will want fresh assurances that America will show up if needed in any clash with China, conversations with politicians and experts show.
TOKYO/JAKARTA (Reuters) – Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will meet Chinese President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of an Asia-Africa summit in Indonesia on Wednesday, a Japanese government official said, the latest sign of a thaw in relations between the Asian rivals.
Sino-Japanese ties have chilled in recent years due to feuds over the two neighbors’ wartime past as well as territorial rows and regional rivalry. A meeting on Wednesday between the two leaders could promote a cautious rapprochement that began when Abe and Xi met at a summit in Beijing late last year.
TOKYO (Reuters) – Final arrangements are being made for Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to meet Chinese President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of an Asia-Africa summit in Indonesia on Wednesday, Japan’s top government spokesman said.
Sino-Japanese ties have chilled in recent years due to feuds over the two neighbours’ wartime past as well as territorial rows and regional rivalry. A meeting on Wednesday between the two leaders could promote a cautious rapprochement that began when Abe and Xi met at a summit in Beijing late last year.
TOKYO (Reuters) – Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe sent a ritual offering on Tuesday to a controversial Tokyo shrine for war dead, a senior spokesman said, a day before he hopes to meet Chinese President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of a leaders’ summit in Jakarta.
Abe sent an evergreen shrub in honor of Japan’s war dead, a gesture likely to anger China, though the timing of the offering – a day before it is traditionally made – was seen as an attempt to avoid a diplomatic embarrassment at Wednesday’s summit.