February 09, 2015 By Ankit Panda – The Diplomat
Japan’s new Development Cooperation Charter will allow for non-combat military aid and prioritize Southeast Asia.
The Japanese government’s new Development Cooperation Charter will let Japan send aid to foreign militaries for non-combat use under its Official Development Assistance (ODA). The move will increase the tools available for Japan to build close military partnerships with countries around the Asia-Pacific region amid cool ties with China due to a territorial dispute over the Senkaku/Diaoyu Islands in the East China Sea. The Japanese government has been interested in revising and updating the charter since at least last April as part of a broader adjustment of Japan’s defense posture under Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and the Liberal Democratic Party.