Japanese diplomat: Tokyo may host AUKUS submarines
Japan is an integral 'ally' in the projects which the AUKUS alliance is carrying out in the Asian pacific.
Under the AUKUS alliance, which was formed in September 2021, the UK and US are due to supply Australia with advanced technology to develop nuclear-powered submarines. China is targeted by the pact, and has accused the US of running a "nuclear arms race" in the region.
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Yamagami Shingo, Japan's ambassador to Australia, said that Tokyo may be hosting the Royal Australian Navy's nuclear-powered submarines which is currently being acquired under the trilateral AUKUS arrangement.
“In the future, Japan may also be playing host to Australian nuclear submarines. So measures are already in place to receive them should they come,” Shingo said at the Advancing AUKUS Conference in Canberra.
Under the 1951 mutual defense treaty, Japan already hosts US nuclear-powered submarines. In this context, Shingo has described their acquisition by Canberra as a "critically important point", which enhanced "regional deterrence."
Japan open to extending cooperation with AUKUS
Shingo noted that Japan is open to extending cooperation with AUKUS projects, such as artificial intelligence and autonomy, quantum technologies, undersea capabilities, advanced cyber, electronic warfare, and hypersonic and counter-hypersonic capabilities.
Japan has been boosting security cooperation with AUKUS members - Australia, US and UK, with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida signing the Joint Declaration on Security Cooperation with Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese in a visit to Australia in October.
"The most significant development from that new document was the promise to consult one another on any regional contingencies that may arise in the future," the ambassador remarked.
Regarding London, Shingo said that the two countries are negotiating merging their fighter aircraft programs and have already started researchig Joint New Air-to-Air Missile (JNAAM).
Washington, according to Shingo, is the most core security partner for Japan, and that there are over 50,000 US troops in the country: “All this emphasis on alliances, relationships and agreements shows that any arrangement involving the defense ties between Australia, the US and the UK is bound to influence Japan’s defense and security sectors – in other words, what matters to you, matters to us too,” Shingo stated.
On September 1st, a Chinese official criticized Japan for hyping up the "Chinese threat" and continuously developing its missile programs. Tokyo intends to abolish its pacifist constitution and return to the policy of military expansion. These actions send a concerning signal to the international community that Japan wants to challenge the global order that was established after the end of World War II.
Prior to WWII, Japan had a long history of military interventions in the Pacific. The enormous crimes imperialist Japan committed against the people of China during the second Sino-Japanese war from 1937-1945 cost possibly between 10 and 25 million Chinese civilians' lives.
These crimes have not been forgotten by China, especially since Japan has continuously refused to give any real apology for the crimes, provide compensation to the victims, or take a clear stand against this part of its history.