TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Defense Minister Kishi Nobuo said in an interview with the Mainichi Shimbun on Tuesday (Sept. 7) that Japan could not stay outside developments in Taiwan as both shared universal values such as freedom and democracy.
Kishi, a younger brother of former Prime Minister Abe Shinzo, noted the lack of transparency in China’s defense budget, which he said was four times higher than Japan’s military expenditure.
As Taiwan is an important ally of Japan’s and the two are only separated by a short distance, Tokyo cannot stand aside when events occur in Taiwan, according to Kishi. The nation's fate is extremely important to Japan’s security and to the peace and stability of the international community, the defense minister said.
While Japan is developing a missile interception system, there has also been debate about whether it should be able to hit targets inside enemy territory, the Liberty Times reported. Kishi said the environment was changing so fast that Japan did not have too much time to consider the issue.