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Indo-Pacific cooperation can't be exclusionary: Armitage

Former US senior official opposes 'with us or against us' approach

Richard Armitage, seen here in a 2018 interview, has been a main contributor to the strengthening of Japan-U.S. ties. (Photo by Tsuyoshi Nagasawa)

WASHINGTON -- Japan needs to strengthen cooperation with the U.S. and other partners as it digs deeper into the push for a free and open Indo-Pacific, former U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage told Nikkei.

As leaders in Tokyo, Washington, New Delhi and Canberra come together to push rules-based international order in the Indo-Pacific region, Armitage, a political stalwart, discussed how Japan's new leadership and the U.S. can deepen that cooperation. But he acknowledged that Japan needs to strike a delicate diplomatic balance, stressing that decisions regarding Asia must ultimately come from Asian countries.

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