US, Japan Develop Joint Military Plan For Taiwan Emergency – Report | Taiwan

The Japanese and US armed forces have drawn up a draft joint operation plan for a possible emergency in Taiwan, Japanese news agency Kyodo reported, amid growing tensions between the island and China.

As part of the plan, the US Marine Corps would establish temporary bases on the Nansei chain of islands stretching from Kyushu – one of Japan’s four main islands – to Taiwan at the initial stage of an emergency in Taiwan. and would deploy troops, Kyodo said Thursday. , citing anonymous Japanese government sources.

The Japanese armed forces would provide logistical support in areas such as ammunition and fuel supply, he said.

Japan, Taiwan’s former colonial ruler, and the United States would likely come to an agreement to begin formulating an official plan at a “2 + 2” meeting of foreign and defense ministers early in the year. next year, the news agency said.

Japanese Defense Ministry officials were not immediately available for comment.

China claims democratically ruled Taiwan as its own “sacred” territory and, over the past two years, has stepped up military and diplomatic pressure to assert its claims of sovereignty, fueling anger in Taipei and deep concern in Washington.

The government of Taiwan says it wants peace, but will defend itself if necessary.

In October, the Japanese government signaled a more assertive stance on China’s aggressive stance towards autonomous Taiwan, suggesting it would consider options and prepare for “various scenarios,” while reaffirming close ties with the United States. .

Earlier this month, former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Japan and the United States could not stand idly by if China attacked Taiwan.

U.S. officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, have long said that given the tens of thousands of troops the United States has in Japan and its proximity to Taiwan, Japan is likely to play an important role in urgently in Taiwan.

Japan is home to major US military bases, notably on the southern island of Okinawa, a short flight from Taiwan, which would be crucial for any US support during a Chinese attack.

The United States, like most countries in the world, recognizes China rather than Taiwan, in accordance with Beijing’s “one China” policy. But Washington is the island’s biggest arms supplier and ally, and is obligated by law to help it defend itself.

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