News / Asia

Japan Seeks 'More Active Role' in Regional Peace Efforts

Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe delivers the opening keynote address for the 13th International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) Asia Security Summit: The Shangri-La Dialogue, in Singapore May 30, 2014.
Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe delivers the opening keynote address for the 13th International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) Asia Security Summit: The Shangri-La Dialogue, in Singapore May 30, 2014.
VOA News
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said his country is prepared to play a more active role in promoting peace in the region.

In a speech to the Shangri-La Dialogue for defense officials and experts in Singapore, Abe stressed that all countries must observe international law.

"Japan will offer its utmost support for the efforts of countries of ASEAN,"  Abe said, referring to the Association of South East Asian Nations, as its members "work to ensure the security of the seas and the skies, and thoroughly maintain freedom of navigation and freedom of overflight."

Japan is just one of several nations in the region currently involved in tense maritime territorial disputes with China.

In his speech in Singapore, Abe urged all nations to observe the rule of law and not use force or threats.

U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel also is attending the meeting in Singapore, where he met Friday with his Japanese and Australian counterparts. U.S. officials say they called on ASEAN and China to agree on a code of conduct for the South China Sea.  

Chinese and Vietnamese ships clashed recently near a controversial Chinese oil rig in disputed waters of the South China Sea. Earlier this year, the Philippines challenged the legality of China's maritime claims at an international tribunal in The Hague. Beijing was angered by the move and refused to participate in the case. Tokyo and Beijing have been at odds over islands in the East China Sea.

Hagel's meeting with the Australian and Japanese defense ministers included talks about North Korea and its controversial nuclear program. North Korea is expected to be the main topic when the Pentagon chief meets Saturday with his counterparts from Japan and South Korea.
Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

You May Like

Obama: Action on Climate Change 'Economic, Security Imperative'

President spoke to reporters on sidelines of UN Climate Summit outside Paris, where leaders are working to agree on binding measures

IMF Bets on China’s Resolve to Reform

IMF announcement already raising questions about just how much Beijing is committed to such reforms

UNICEF: Hidden Epidemic of HIV Among Adolescents

Researchers warn that Asia Pacific nations facing sharp rise in incidence of HIV among adolescents

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
by: Chi Le from: USA
June 01, 2014 1:11 AM
“Abe urged all nations to observe the rule of law and not use force or threats.” Clearly, if China really wanted peace and stability, it can challenge the legality against Japan to claim Senkakus/Diaoyu islands. And appropriately, it has to be a defendant for an international lawsuit of the Philippines. The lawful actions really bring the world peace. I don’t know why “Beijing was angered by the move and refused to participate in the case.” What do China’s leaders want really? Clearly, China doesn't have enough reasons for lawful actions, so it arbitrarily exercises rules of law as a barbarian. The bloody government crackdown on protesters in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square is an example of the savage action.

by: Shintaro Sakamoto from: Japan
May 31, 2014 8:01 AM
Chinese government always threatens the neighboring country that does not go along with. It’s a nuisance in international society. Stop Chinese aggressive oil rig strategy. Coercion, intimidation is a very deadly thing that leads only to conflict.
All nations, all people deserve respect. Chinese forces have always carried out dangerous actions against neighboring countries as the world knows. All what they say later are poor excuses. Chinese gov’t including state-run media is an out-and-out liar. Numerous innocent Chinese people are being fooled by controlled domestic media reports. Do not trust CCP’s propaganda, because CCP wants to maintain its legitimacy by turning aside the people’s concern.

by: lincon from: east
May 31, 2014 4:08 AM
this guy is trying to fool the world. one day, he will lead his military to take revenge on the usa. so the usa must be alert.

by: Young thing from: nowhere
May 30, 2014 10:42 PM
So we have to trust who? “The who” that has claimed the defend zone over the East China sea? Or you want us to trust in the one who put an oil rig into its neighbor territory , extorted and arrogated Paracel 1974, Spartly 1988, Scarbourg …. Sorry to say, we just can’t, we are not idiots. We read News daily and we know who tried to protect PEACE and who tried to stir it up. We love PEACE. We pray for it daily. We even love guys who pissed on our land, who rob our money in our banks, who made us unemployed… God bless them. “They just don’t know what they are doing”.
Japanese show that they are reliable people. Although, they (their ancestors) made mistake and were punished in the past, they (their new generations) still grow up from pain and death. They work hard to make them rich. Even though their country faced some horrible disasters, they still showed sympathy to poor countries (the ODA of Japan started in 1954 which provided over $221 billion USD to 185 nations and regions)…
And now under the threat from the “peace rising /WAR RISING”, Japan the one who experienced the war and death mostly trying to protect PEACE is not too difficult to understand. As you know, after had made a big mistake with God, saint Peter repented and tried to spread God’s peace doctrine. God made him to be His church’s first stone.
In this 21st century, when any guy can talk about “kill”, “war”, “terrorize”… in any place (News, Website, facebook…) PEACE should not only be prayed but also be confirmed in real balance actions. I believe Japan with its balance security intention can make the world safer.
In Response

by: A from: China
May 31, 2014 5:42 AM
Though i come from China,I still think China is a big threat to the peace around asia as well as Japan.Beacuse both side of the two countries just extend their army and always provoke.I just think China should do something for disarmament since military expenditure is too much.I'd rather to use them in education and social welfare.What japan do is percipient because it is too long for Japan to be treated as a vanquished country after WW2.
In Response

by: Sun from: Taipei
May 30, 2014 11:33 PM
I really agree with you. We owe our current prosperity to Japanese economical and technological help. Japan, be a leader for Asian peace!

by: van from: california
May 30, 2014 3:21 PM
This guy. He is confused whether he is an American or a Japanese just what Hitler was in the past. Hitler wasn't born in Germany, or did he? This war face called Abe, He spent too many years in the States. Is he even a Japanese? I have a feel that he is going to start World War 3. May i remind everyone on Earth that Japan and Germany did have solid good reasons to go to war with other countries in the past, but when the war started, all that reason were proved wrong. And that is fascism. Don't trust this guy.
In Response

May 31, 2014 5:57 PM
It is China that is going to start WW3 if they don't renounce their illegal and illogical territorial claim in the South China Sea and East China Sea.Mr Xi Jinping is just a shameless hypocrite who always does exactly opposite to what he says.He oftens advocates for peace but his words are always full of threats.What he means is if you want peace,do what you are told or shut up.Asia has benefited so much from Japan's ODA programs.Without Japan's help and investments China wouldn't be where it is today.China has becoming so assertive and aggressive,and Japan is the only country that can restrain them.If we don't want another war,we all should support their return to the world stage.Remember it is China that has territorial ambitions,not Japan.If Vietnam falls,China would go after the rest.So stop listening to all those Chinese sweet talks before it is too late

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
With HIV, Can We Get to Zero?i
Carol Pearson
November 29, 2015 1:23 PM
The theme of this year's World AIDS Day is "Getting to Zero." The U.N. says new HIV infections have been reduced by 35 percent since 2000 and AIDS-related deaths are down by 42 percent since the peak in 2004. VOA's Carol Pearson takes a look at what it might take to actually have an AIDS-free generation.

Video With HIV, Can We Get to Zero?

The theme of this year's World AIDS Day is "Getting to Zero." The U.N. says new HIV infections have been reduced by 35 percent since 2000 and AIDS-related deaths are down by 42 percent since the peak in 2004. VOA's Carol Pearson takes a look at what it might take to actually have an AIDS-free generation.

Video Political Motives Seen Behind Cancelled Cambodian Water Festival

For the fourth time in the five years since more than 350 people were killed in a stampede at Cambodia’s annual water festival, authorities canceled the event this year. Officials blamed environmental reasons as the cause, but many see it as fallout from rising political tensions with a fresh wave of ruling party intimidation against the opposition. David Boyle and Kimlong Meng report from Phnom Penh.

Video African Circus Gives At-Risk Youth a 2nd Chance

Ethiopia hosted the first African Circus Arts Festival this past weekend with performers from seven different African countries. Most of the performers are youngsters coming form challenging backgrounds who say the circus gave them a second chance.

Video US Lawmakers Brace for End-of-Year Battles

U.S. lawmakers are returning to Washington for Congress’ final working weeks of the year. And, as VOA's Michael Bowman reports, a full slate of legislative business awaits them, from keeping the federal government open to resolving a battle with the White House over the admittance of Syrian refugees.

Video Taiwan Looks for Role in South China Sea Dispute

The Taiwanese government is one of several that claims territory in the hotly contested South China Sea, but Taipei has long been sidelined in the dispute, overshadowed by China. Now, as the Philippines challenges Beijing’s claims in an international court at The Hague, Taipei is looking to publicly assert its claims. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.

Video After Terrorist Attacks, Support for Refugees Fades

The terrorists who killed and injured almost 500 people around Paris this month are mostly French or Belgian nationals. But at least two apparently took advantage of Europe’s migrant crisis to sneak into the region. The discovery has hardened views about legitimate refugees, including those fleeing the same extremist violence that hit the French capital. Lisa Bryant has this report for VOA from the Paris suburb of Cergy-Pontoise

Video Syrian Refugees in US Express Concern for Those Left Behind

Syrian immigrants in the United States are concerned about the negative tide of public opinion and the politicians who want to block a U.S. plan to accept 10,000 Syrian refugees. Zlatica Hoke reports many Americans are fighting to dispel suspicions linking refugees to terrorists.

Video Thais Send Security Concerns Down the River

As Thailand takes in the annual Loy Krathong festival, many ponder the country’s future and security. Steve Sandford reports from Chiang Mai.

Video Islamic State Unfazed by Losses in Iraq, Syria

Progress in the U.S.-led effort to beat Islamic State on its home turf in Iraq and Syria has led some to speculate the terror group may be growing desperate. But counterterror officials say that is not the case, and warn the recent spate of terror attacks is merely part of the group’s evolution. VOA National Security correspondent Jeff Seldin has more.

Video Belgium-Germany Border Remains Porous, Even As Manhunt For Paris Attacker Continues

One of the suspected gunmen in the Nov. 13 Paris attacks, Salah Abdeslam, evaded law enforcement, made his way to Belgium, and is now believed to have fled to Germany. VOA correspondent Ayesha Tanzeem makes the journey across the border from Belgium into Germany to see how porous the borders really are.

Video US, Cambodian Navies Pair Up in Gulf of Thailand

The U.S. Navy has deployed one of its newest and most advanced ships to Cambodia to conduct joint training drills in the Gulf of Thailand. Riding hull-to-hull with Cambodian ships, the seamen of the USS Fort Worth are executing joint-training drills that will help build relations in Southeast Asia. David Boyle reports for VOA from Preah Sihanouk province.

Video Uncertain Future for Syrian Refugee Resettlement in Illinois

For the trickle of Syrian refugees finding new homes in the Midwest city of Chicago, the call to end resettlement in many U.S. states is adding another dimension to their long journey fleeing war. Organizations working to help them integrate say the backlash since the Paris attacks is both harming and helping their efforts to provide refugees sanctuary. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.

VOA Blogs