Britain and Japan must cooperate more closely with “dictatorial and coercive forces”: Johnson

Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson emphasized the need for European and East Asian allies to unite against “autocratic and coercive forces” in welcoming the new defense pact with Japan.

Prime Minister Johnson spoke at Downing Street in parallel with Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s visit, saying he was “extremely pleased” that the two countries had agreed to a Mutual Access Agreement for Armed Services (RAA).

In a statement, Downing Street said in a groundbreaking defense partnership that British and Japanese troops would work together to conduct training, joint exercises and disaster relief efforts to support Britain’s efforts in the Indo-Pacific region. Said that it would be.

Epoch Times Photo
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson welcomes Prime Minister Fumio Kishida with Honorary Guards on May 5, 2022 in Westminster, London. (Dan Kitwood / Getty Images)

The United Kingdom will be the first European country to have such an agreement with Japan, which currently has two bilateral visiting forces agreements with the United States and Australia respectively.

The British Prime Minister praised the “strong stance” taken by the Japanese government for Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

“We, the United Kingdom, recognize that our security in Europe is inseparable from our collective security in the Asia-Pacific and Indo-Pacific regions.”

In a clear reference to the Chinese Communist Party, Johnson said, “There is a direct reading from the actions of dictatorial and coercive forces in Europe to what can happen in East Asia, which makes us more closely. That’s why I want to cooperate. “

Mr. Kishida’s first official visit to Britain was marked by an honorary guardian and Royal Air Force flyover at the Horse Guards Parade in central London.

The Japanese Prime Minister spoke with the interpreter, thanking Mr Johnson for his “warm welcome” and said he was looking forward to a “very fruitful debate” on bilateral relations as well as Ukraine and world affairs. ..

The British government describes Japan as the closest security partner in Asia.

Following an integrated review of government defense and foreign policy that announced a “tilt” towards the Indo-Pacific region, discussions began in September 2021 on deepening defense relations between Britain and Japan.

In a keynote speech on April 27, Foreign Minister Liz Truss called for a “restart” of the free world approach to world security.

She said a new approach based on “military power, economic security, and a deeper global alliance” is needed to usher in a “new era of peace, security, and prosperity.”

Truss wants a “global NATO” with a “global outlook,” which is “ready to face global threats.”

The alliance needs to “pre-empt threats in the Indo-Pacific” and “make it possible for democracies like Taiwan to protect themselves,” she said.

Lily Zhou and PA Media contributed to this report.

Alexander Chan