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Japan ruling bloc split over China 'threat' in defense policy review

Resistance from Komeito party results in Beijing being labeled a 'challenge'

A Chinese military parade in Beijing. Japan's new defense policy documents will stop short of calling China a "threat."   © Reuters

TOKYO -- The smaller party in Japan's ruling coalition has pulled the government's defense policy debate in a more dovish direction, toning down the language used to describe the risk posed by China.

Three upcoming policy documents will lay out Tokyo's view of its security environment and will provide the grounds for the government's plans to sharply ramp up defense spending.

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