China ready to annex Taiwan by 'any means possible'
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Nobuo Kishi told the Guardian China’s military has become more powerful and is “attempting to use its power to unilaterally change the status quo in the East and South China Seas”. The defence minister warned that China was becoming more politically and economically powerful, causing Tokyo to have “strong concerns”.
Japan has “strong concerns in regards to the safety and security of not only our own country and the region but for the global community”, Kishi warned.
“China is strengthening its military power both in terms of quantity and quality, and rapidly improving its operational capability,” Mr Kishi told the Guardian.
Mr Kishi’s comments come amid growing fears surrounding China’s intentions with Taiwan and the disputed South China Sea.
Taiwan is a democratically ruled nation, but China claims sovereignty over the island and has indicated plans on merging it with the mainland.
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China has not ruled out using force to achieve a desirable goal in regard to Taiwan.
Previously, Japan’s Defence Minister has said that the security of Taiwan is tied directly to Japan and stressed the importance of Japanese intervention in the case of conflict over Taiwan.
“The peace and stability of Taiwan are directly connected to Japan and we are closely monitoring ties between China and Taiwan, as well as Chinese military activity,” he told Bloomberg.
“As China strengthens its military, its balance with Taiwan is tipping heavily to the Chinese side.”
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Most recently, the UK, US and Australia formed the AUKUS alliance to supply Australia with technology for nuclear-powered submarines.
This pact is thought to also counter the threat from China.
Australia has spoken out about the alliance after a Chinese state newspaper blasted the country as the “running dog” of Washington.
“The Chinese spokespersons for the Communist party are very clear of their intent with regard to Taiwan,” Peter Dutton, Australian Minister for Defence, said.
“Now equally, the United States has been very clear of their intention towards Taiwan.
“Nobody wants to see conflict but that really is a question for the Chinese.
“We are living in the most uncertain period since the Second World War.”
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