- The meeting in January would also be Kishida's first summit at the White House since he became president in 2021.
- Kishida hinted on Tuesday that a snap election might be held before a tax increase for the country's defence goes into effect "sometime after 2024."
Reports say that the Japanese defence ministry plans to put a missile defence system on the inhabited island of Yonaguni, which is close to Taiwan. The move seems to be part of an effort to strengthen the defences of Japan’s islands in the southwest.
Japan’s Jiji News said on Tuesday that the Japanese defence ministry is going to put a surface-to-air missile defence system unit on Okinawa’s Yonaguni Island.
Takeshi Aoki, a ministry spokesman, said that putting the missile defence unit on the island is part of a plan to expand the Ground Self-Defense Force Camp there and make the defences of Japan’s southwestern islands stronger.
This comes after the Japanese government announced its biggest military buildup since World War II: a $320 billion plan to buy missiles that can hit China. This comes at a time when tensions are high in the area and Russia has invaded Ukraine.
The Yomiuri daily reported on Wednesday that Japan and the U.S. are making plans for a meeting between Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and President Joe Biden on January 13. The report was based on information from government sources who are familiar with the situation. The news source said that Kishida plans to talk about Japan’s new security policy, which was changed this month, when his country’s largest military buildup is unveiled.
The meeting in January would also be Kishida’s first summit at the White House since he became president in 2021.
Kishida hinted on Tuesday that a snap election might be held before a tax increase for the country’s defence goes into effect “sometime after 2024.”
“We will ask the public to take on the burden for a reasonable amount of time, which will be between 2024 and 2027. On a late-night TV show, Kishida said, “We’ll decide when it starts, and I think there could be an election by then.”
According to the Kyodo news agency, Kishida said in an interview on Wednesday that he is not thinking about having an election next year. If Kishida doesn’t call for an early election, the next national election is scheduled for 2025.