Rajnath Singh meets Japanese counterpart in Tokyo to bolster defence ties

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Thursday met with his Japanese counterpart Yasukazu Hamada and said the bilateral special strategic and global partnership between the two countries plays a crucial role in ensuring a free, open and rules-based Indo-Pacific region.
Singh, who is on the last leg of his five-day visit to Mongolia and Japan, met Japan’s Minister of Defence Hamada here.
“Reviewed various aspects of bilateral defence cooperation and regional affairs during the bilateral meeting with Japan’s Minister of Defence, Mr Yasukazu Hamada in Tokyo today. This year marks 70 years of diplomatic relations between the two countries,” Singh tweeted.
“India and Japan pursue a Special Strategic and Global Partnership. India’s defence partnership with Japan will play a crucial role in ensuring a free, open and rules-based Indo Pacific region,” he tweeted.
India, the US and several other world powers have been talking about the need to ensure a free, open and thriving Indo-Pacific in the backdrop of China’s rising military manoeuvring in the region.
China claims nearly all of the disputed South China Sea, though Taiwan, the Philippines, Brunei, Malaysia and Vietnam all claim parts of it. Beijing has built artificial islands and military installations in the South China Sea.
In Japan, Singh and External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar will join their Japanese counterparts at the ‘2+2’ foreign and defence ministerial dialogue.
The ‘2+2’ dialogue is taking place more than five months after Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida visited India for the annual India-Japan summit.