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Japan needs stronger defenses, more frequent security reviews: Abe

Deterrence keeps rogue countries 'from hitting the missile launch button,' former PM says

Former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe speaks with Nikkei on Dec. 1. (Photo by Uichiro Kasai)

TOKYO -- A military crisis over Taiwan would be "an emergency for the Japan-U.S. alliance," former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told Nikkei on Wednesday, adding that his country needs to strengthen its own defenses to make the partnership a solid deterrent against threats in Indo-Pacific region.

Abe -- a kingmaker in the ruling Liberal Democratic Party who took over leadership of its largest faction in November -- called for more flexibility in updating Japan's security strategy to adapt to the fast-changing environment in East Asia.

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