WASHINGTON – Senate Foreign Relations Committee Ranking Member Jim Risch (R-Idaho) and Chairman Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) issued the following statement applauding Japan’s announcement of its new National Security Strategy and National Defense Strategy:
“Japan’s announcements today represent a consequential evolution in its resolve to advance a free and open Indo-Pacific. Today’s commitments build on Japan’s growing contributions to the ability of the U.S.-Japan alliance to navigate an increasingly complex security environment, and demonstrate Japan’s willingness to pursue a more active foreign policy in the Indo-Pacific and throughout the world.
“We welcome the commitment to increase Japan’s defense budget to 2% of GDP in the next five years. We also applaud the crucial decision to acquire stand-off counterstrike capabilities – a necessary step in today’s deteriorating security environment and a significant contribution to regional defense. As Japan implements these steps, the United States is committed to working with Japan to further enhance interoperability and increase integration.
“We commend Prime Minister Kishida for delivering on his promise to strengthen Japan’s defense posture. We look forward to Japan playing an even greater regional role within the alliance, as a partner in the Quad, and as part of U.S.-Japan-Korea trilateral cooperation. Japan’s leadership in the Indo-Pacific will make the world a more secure and prosperous place.”