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Abe warns China not to misjudge Taiwan Strait situation

Former Japanese prime minister says Taiwan-Japan security ties are on same level as Japan-US alliance

Former Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzo.

Former Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzo. (AP photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Former Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzo said on Wednesday (Dec. 1) that Japan will not accept a military invasion of Taiwan and warned Chinese leader Xi Jinping (習近平) that he should not misjudge the regional situation.

Abe was invited by the Institute for National Policy Research to speak on the new era of Taiwan-Japan relations on Wednesday morning. He likened Taiwan’s security challenges with regard to China to those of Japan’s, referencing China’s intrusions on his country’s territorial waters.

Japan must deploy forces ahead of time to counter China's continuous military provocations from the air and sea, he said.

Abe pointed out that Japan’s outlying islands such as Maejima Island and Yonaguni Island are only about 100 kilometers away from Taiwan. An invasion of Taiwan is a major threat to Japan’s territory, and Tokyo cannot allow such a thing to happen, he said.

If Taiwan has a problem, then Japan also has a problem, Abe said, adding that Taiwan-Japan relations are comparable to the Japan-U.S. alliance. This fact must not be underestimated by Beijing, he said.

The former Japanese prime minister said that if China takes military action against Taiwan, it will have a severe effect on the global economy. Beijing will suffer a major blow, as the loss will outweigh the gain, he said.

Abe mentioned that Taiwan and Japan should bolster their economic and military capabilities to counter Chinese belligerence, while also continuously persuading Beijing to adopt a “rational and peaceful solution.”