Are you watching China? Historic military drill as Japan, US and France team up

China: Military show off aircraft carrier during drills

The operation was held on one of Japan’s uninhabited islands, which are often used for defence simulations. These exercises are focused on offering resistance to China’s aggressive policy of expansionism. Chief of staff of the French navy Admiral Pierre Vandier told Japan’s Sankei newspaper: “We want to demonstrate our presence to the region and send a message about Japan-France cooperation”.

“This is a message aimed at China.

“This is a message about multi-lateral partnerships and the freedom of passage.”

China has said its intentions in the region are peaceful.

Tokyo is concerned about a rise in Chinese naval patrols near disputed islands in the East China Sea.

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Japan calls this disputed chain of islets the Senkaku islands, whereas China refers to them as the Diaoyu islands.

Joe Biden has recently reiterated the US commitment to a US-Japan defence treaty.

Last month Japan’s foreign minister Toshimitsu Motegi met his Chinese counterpart to discuss the long-term sovereignty of the disputed islands.

At a press conference, he put forward his country’s concrete stance on the Senkaku Islands to his Chinese counterpart.

China’s foreign minister Wang Yi visited Japan in late November, where his opposite number said: “I urged China to act in a constructive way regarding the waters around the islands.”

China’s foreign minister Wang said the two countries “will work together to resume necessary personnel exchanges amid the coronavirus pandemic”.

Japan has often complained that Chinese vessels “repeatedly intruded into its territorial waters off the islands” in Okinawa province.

Tokyo has repeatedly claimed China has “intruded into its territorial waters off the islands”.

The Senkau islands are located in Japan’s Okinawan province.

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