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Japan and South Korea want alliance with NATO

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Japan's Prime Minister Fumio Kishida at the NATO Summit in Madrid on June 29, 2022.
Japan’s Prime Minister Fumio Kishida at the NATO Summit in Madrid on June 29, 2022.| Photo: EFE/JJGuillen

The Chinese threat drove Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and South Korean President Yoon Seok-youl to Madrid for the NATO Summit. The two countries were invited as “Asian partners”.

Japan is part of the Quad group of cooperation for the Indo-Pacific region, as opposed to China, along with the United States, India and Australia. Present in the discussions taking place this week in Spain, the Asian country intends to “promote the idea that the security of Europe and the Indo-Pacific are inseparable”, described Kishida.

Since signing an agreement in 2010, Japan has collaborated with the alliance through information sharing and maritime security support. Today, the country’s main concern is the offensive by neighboring Russia and China, as well as a possible conflict in Taiwan, similar to the war in Ukraine.

Likewise, South Korea wants to face the threat of authoritarian regimes in the region, “while the international situation becomes unpredictable”, said the country’s national security director, Kim Sung-han. In addition to protecting itself against North Korea, South Korean diplomacy seeks a rapprochement with Japan.

Last week, China took a stand against this geopolitical movement around the North Atlantic. “The Asia-Pacific region is beyond the geographical scope of NATO. The countries and populations of the region are absolutely opposed to anything that is said or done to extend the military bloc or stir up division and confrontation,” declared the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Wang Wenbin.

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