Taipei [Taiwan], March 16 (ANI): In a rare statement about Taiwan, Japan Defense Minister Nobuo Kishi on Saturday (local time) said that the balance of power in the Taiwan Strait is changing in China's favour, reported Taiwan Times.
This comment comes after the talks held between the leaders of the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (Quad) nations.
On March 12, the first-ever virtual summit of the top leaders of Quad comprising PM Narendra Modi, United States President Joe Biden, Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, and Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison took place.
Kishi, a brother of former Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzo, said China's advantage was likely to increase year on year. Meanwhile, these public comments by senior government officials about Taiwan are extremely rare, reported Taiwan Times.
China is continuing to strengthen its military capabilities, changing the balance of power in its favour, Kishi said, adding that Japan would closely monitor developments and changes in the area before concluding that Taiwan and China should resolve their problems peacefully through direct contact.
Turning to the issue of the disputed Diaoyutai Islands, which are controlled by Japan but claimed by China and Taiwan, the Defense Minister said that Beijing was trying to change their status unilaterally by sending coast guard vessels into the area on a regular basis, Taiwan Times further reported.
During the first Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (Quad), the four leaders--frin India, Australia, Japan and the United States -- stressed on a free, open and rule-based Indo-Pacific region that is "anchored by democratic values, and unconstrained by coercion".
In a joint statement, the Quad leaders said: "We bring diverse perspectives and are united in a shared vision for the free and open Indo-Pacific. We strive for a region that is free, open, inclusive, healthy, anchored by democratic values, and unconstrained by coercion."
"Today, the global devastation caused by COVID-19, the threat of climate change, and security challenges facing the region summon us with renewed purpose," they said.
While reiterating its commitment to a free and secure Indo-Pacific region, leaders of the Quad countries pledged to work with other countries who share the same goals and ensuring that COVID-19 vaccines are administered throughout the region till 2022. (ANI)