Japan PM points to beefed-up military in speech



Agence France Presse

Published — Monday 28 January 2013

Last update 28 January 2013 8:08 pm

| نسخة PDF Print News | A A

TOKYO: Japan faces a “diplomatic and security crisis,” Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Monday, a day after his defense minister announced plans to strengthen the military amid a bitter dispute with China.
The proposal to raise the defense budget by 40 billion yen ($441 million) or about 0.8 percent in the year starting from April sparked criticism from Beijing.
The plan also calls for a small increase in personnel for the 228,000-strong military, the first such rise in about 20 years.
Abe, in his first speech to parliament since taking office last month, spoke of “continuous provocations” faced by his country, “causing us to face a diplomatic and security crisis.”
“By taking full measures to develop, manage and safeguard remote islands near our borders, I declare now that, under this cabinet, we will firmly defend the lives and property of Japanese people as well as our territories, territorial waters and territorial airspace,” he added.
Tokyo’s plans sparked criticism from Beijing amid the sovereignty dispute over an East China Sea island chain.
“Japan’s moves in the military and security field will always be a high concern for its Asian neighbors,” foreign ministry spokesman Hong Lei told reporters in Beijing.
“We hope the Japanese side can be committed to peaceful development, respect the concerns of the regional countries, take history as a mirror and do more for regional peace and stability.”
Japanese Defense Minister Itsunori Onodera announced the proposed spending rise on Sunday.
He also said the military would add nearly 300 personnel to help defend the disputed islands which Tokyo calls the Senkakus but are known as the Diaoyus in China.
“With this budget, our existing aircraft can become fully activated. We will be able to build a stronger system” to monitor our territory, Onodera said.

What's happening around Saudi Arabia

ALKHOBAR: A power failure at the King Fahd Causeway on Wednesday night resulted in a massive traffic congestion, even as officials failed to explain the cause of the snag, local media reported.A power outage for 74 minutes on the link between the Kin...
JEDDAH: A female Saudi lawyer was able to get a stay order on a ruling by the general court in Jeddah that awarded custody of a two-year-old girl to her father. She successfully argued to get the court order reversed that gave custody back to the mot...
JEDDAH: The Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice (Haia) said that combating harassment cases is part of its responsibility to promote Islamic values and morals in society.“Those harassing women will be brought to book,” s...
RIYADH: A thick layer of sand covered the city’s skyline on Saturday with a heavy blanket of dust caused by strong winds hampering visibility and creating traffic snarls on busy roads.The traffic department advised motorists to drive slowly and exerc...
JEDDAH: More than 26 million Umrah pilgrims and worshippers visited the Grand Mosque during the month of Ramadan and in the first few days after Eid Al-Fitr, thanks to a smooth transport arrangement under the guidance of Makkah Gov. Prince Khaled Al-...
AL-AHSA: An outbreak of lumpy skin disease (LSD) has been discovered in cattle in Al-Ahsa which is an area with many cows. All necessary measures have been taken to protect the livestock, said Mahmoud Al-Shuaibi of the Agriculture Department in Al-Ah...
RIYADH: An architectural masterpiece — the King Abdul Aziz Historical Center (KAHC) — in Riyadh is a huge complex dedicated solely to collecting, preserving, promoting and showcasing the history and heritage of Saudi Arabia. The KAHC is a three milli...
RIYADH: The Saudi Blind Society (Kafif) has made all preparations for the three-day workshop for the blind to be held here next week and attended by delegates from various Asian countries.Mohammed bin Suleiman Al-Shuwaiman, Kafif director general, th...
JEDDAH: The number of Saudis who took early retirement schemes last year stood at 38,647, the General Organization for Social Insurance (GOSI) has said. The Eastern Provinces got the lion's share of disbursements for retirees, amounting to SR3.8 bill...
JEDDAH: Meat and poultry topped the list of food items seized by the Saudi Food and Drug Authority (SFDA) at the border crossings for violating the health standards in the last two months.Approximately 267,137 kg of unfit meat and poultry were reject...
JEDDAH: Many sponsors and workers of small companies are struggling to get a comparatively cheaper health cover for renewal of iqama (residential permit) as the insurance companies have stopped issuing the same.The passport department has made it com...
RIYADH: Police have detained 11 Indonesian nationals, who arrived in the holy city of Makkah for Umrah a few days back.The Indonesian Religious Affairs Ministry is working closely with the Indonesian Consulate in Jeddah to assist the group of citizen...
JEDDAH: The National Committee for Bakeries at the Council of Saudi Chambers (CSC) said this Haj season would see no shortage in supplies of bakery items.The committee said there was need to increase operational labor by about 20 percent.It confirmed...
JEDDAH: Maj. Gen. Ibrahim Al Hamzi, director general of prisons, has sacked Brig. Ahmad Al Shahrani, director of Jeddah prisons, after the case of a video clip about prisoners taking heroin went viral, according to local media.Quoting informed source...
JEDDAH: Makkah Gov. Prince Khaled Al-Faisal met with leaders of security forces in the region on Thursday to discuss future plans and mechanisms to limit infiltrators from entering the holy sites via land passageways during Haj.During the meeting, he...

Stay Connected

Facebook