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International relations

Japan and Mekong nations to push 150 Southeast Asia projects

Tokyo Strategy 2018 enumerates infrastructure and human resource programs

Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen, left, Lao Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Myanmar Leader Aung San Suu Kyi, Thai Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha and Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc join for the 10th Mekong-Japan Summit at the Akasaka Palace, in Tokyo, on Oct. 9. (Pool)

TOKYO -- The leaders of Japan and five Southeast Asian countries that share the Mekong River on Tuesday agreed to adopt a new policy that pushes forward more than 150 projects in the Mekong region using official development assistance from Japan.

During a summit in Tokyo, the leaders of Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar also confirmed that they will support the "free and open Indo-Pacific strategy" being promoted by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and U.S. President Donald Trump. This strategy is seen aimed at countering China as it expands its influence throughout Southeast Asia.

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