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PM Abe stresses importance of enhancing coast guard capabilities in light of China’s activities near Senkakus

NHK reported this afternoon that at a meeting of ministers involved in enhancing the capabilities of the Japan Coast Guard (JCG) at the Kantei today, Prime Minister Abe stressed that in light of China sending bigger and more heavily armed government ships to waters near the Senkaku Islands, Japan will make every effort to cooperate with the U.S. and other countries to maintain maritime security. JCG Commandant Iwanami reported that the number of North Korean boats found drifting near Japan this year was double that of last year. Abe was quoted as saying that the maritime security regime needs to be reinforced in response to “repeated intrusions by foreign government ships near the Senkakus and the violation of fishing rights by foreign fishing boats.” He also stated: “It is important to establish an international maritime order in cooperation with other countries in order to realize a free and open Indo-Pacific.”

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