In a telling sign of how China’s rise has helped turn former wartime foes into allies, Japan and the Philippines agreed on Thursday to cooperate more closely on maritime security.
During talks in Manila, the foreign ministers of Japan and the Philippines proclaimed their nations to be strategic partners that would collaborate more in resolving their separate territorial disputes with China, news reports said. They also expressed “mutual concern” over increasingly assertive claims by China that have embroiled both nations, according to Kyodo News.
Japan is in a tense showdown over islands in the East China Sea, while the Philippines has wrangled with China over control of islands and fishing grounds in the South China Sea. The two nations agreed to exchange information and discuss each other’s strategies for responding to China, the ministers were quoted as saying. The Philippine minister, Albert del Rosario, said the discussion included a request by his country for 10 new patrol ships from Japan to strengthen the Filipino coast guard.
Read the rest of the story: Japan and Philippines to Bolster Maritime Cooperation.