Japan’s Defense Minister Nobuo Kishi has agreed to set up a joint communication hotline with China by the end of 2022.
“A [military] hotline between the Japanese and Chinese defense authorities has been agreed and we aim to launch the operation by the end of next year,” Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno said.
Matsuno said Kishi held a video call with his Chinese counterpart, Fenghe Wei, on Monday where the Japanese defense chief stressed the importance of stability in the Taiwan Strait.
China’s Defense Ministry also confirmed the hotline agreement in a statement without giving a date for its implementation.
The statement said the ministers discussed the differences between the two countries during the meeting, including their competing claims to an uninhabited rocky island chain in the East China Sea controlled by Japan but which China claims as its sovereign territory.
“China will firmly safeguard its territorial sovereignty and maritime rights and interests. The two sides should focus on the overall interests of bilateral relations and strive to maintain stability in the East China Sea,” the Defense Ministry said.
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