China questions if Japan is dropping exclusive defense policy, deviating from peace

The Upper House of the Japanese Diet approved a landmark security legislation on September 19. The said legislation will allow Japanese forces to fight overseas and respond to threats against its allies. For 70 years after World War II, Japan has adopted a pacifist constitution that forbids it to use force in resolving conflicts, except in self-defense.

In response to the passage of the said legislation, the Chinese government said the move is against the trend of peaceful development. “The passage of the security legislation by the Japanese Diet is an unprecedented move taken by post-war Japan in the military and security fields,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hong Lei said.

“Japan’s recent military buildup and drastic changes to its military and security policies are out of step with the trend of the times featuring peace, development and cooperation, making the international community question whether Japan is going to drop its exclusive defense policy and deviate from the path of peaceful development it has been following after WWII,” the Chinese spokesperson added.

Contrary to China’s reaction, the Philippine government welcomed Japan’s move. “We welcome the passage of measures that will enable Japan to play a more active role in promoting regional peace and security,” Department of National Defense spokesperson Peter Paul Galvez on Saturday.

“We welcome the passage of legislation on national security by Japan’s National Diet,” Presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda told dzRB Radyo ng Bayan. “As Japan is our strategic partner, we look forward to efforts to strengthen such to further our mutual goals of greater peace and stability in the international community.”