Japan’s deputy defense minister on Monday warned of the growing threat posed by Chinese and Russian collaboration and said it was necessary to “wake up” to Beijing’s pressure on Taiwan and protect the island “as a democratic country.”
Speaking to the Hudson Institute think tank, State Minister of Defense Yasuhide Nakayama questioned whether the decision of many countries, including Japan and United States, to follow a “one-China” policy that has recognized Beijing rather than Taipei since the 1970s would stand the test of time.
“Was it right?” he asked at the online event, referring to how future generations will judge policymakers on the issue. “I don’t know.”
Nakayama said democratic countries had to protect each other and noted that he had in the past referred to Taiwan as a “red line.”
“So we have to protect Taiwan as a democratic country.”
Nakayama noted that Japan and Taiwan were geographically close, and added that if something happened in Taiwan it would affect Japan’s Okinawa prefecture, where US forces and their families are based.