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POLITICS

U.S. eager to bring India over to its side

  • 2015-01-28 15:00:00
  • , Yomiuri
  • Translation

(Yomiuri: January 28, 2015 – p. 8)

 

 By Hiroyuki Ishida

 

 During his visit to India from Jan. 25 through 27, President Obama deepened his relationship of trust with Indian Prime Minister Modi and strengthened bilateral strategic cooperation. With China’s maritime advancement in mind, President Obama appeared to be eager to bring India over to the U.S. side. On the other hand, while India clearly demonstrated a stance of attaching importance to the U.S., it apparently intends to maintain its relationship with China because it relies on the nation economically.

 

 Trilateral relations aimed at countering China

 

 In countering China in the Asia-Pacific region, the Obama administration attaches importance to a framework of trilateral cooperation with allies and friendly nations that have common values. The Japan-U.S.-South Korea, Japan-U.S.-Australia, and Japan-U.S.-India relationships constitute the foundation of this framework.

 

 A joint statement released on Jan. 25 clearly mentioned the importance of Japan-U.S.-India trilateral cooperation and saying that the three countries “will identify projects of common interest and realize them as early as possible.”

 

 The joint statement was apparently aimed at raising the trilateral relationship from the current level of conducting joint exercises to the next level involving trilateral foreign ministers’ meetings.

 

 As for the Japan-U.S.-South Korea relationship, the three countries share military information on threats posed by North Korea. The relationship is also aimed at deterring China and South Korea from joining forces against Japan over history issues. The basic purpose of the Japan-U.S.-Australia and Japan-U.S.-India trilateral relationship is to enhance information sharing on maritime security and cooperation.

 

 The reason that Japan plays such an important role in the three trilateral relationships led by the U.S. is that the U.S. expeditionary forces such as the 7th Fleet and the 3rd Marine Expeditionary Force are based in Japan.

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