|Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono|
WASHINGTON (Kyodo) -- Japan will provide a total of $500 million in aid for coastal states in the Indo-Pacific in the three years to 2019 to help boost maritime security there, Foreign Minister Taro Kono said Thursday.
The measure was apparently in response to China's aggressive pursuit of extensive maritime claims.
Kono made the announcement during a joint news conference after a meeting of the foreign and defense ministers of Japan and the United States in Washington.
A Japanese Foreign Ministry official said separately that aid recipients include the Philippines and Vietnam, both of which are embroiled in territorial disputes with Beijing in the South China Sea.
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