The US and Japan started reviewing joint defense agreements on Thursday, amid a territorial dispute between Tokyo and Beijing over islands in the East China Sea, Reuters reported. The guidelines – which cover how Japanese and US troops cooperate in Japan or in its vicinity – are being revisited for the first time in 15 years, as there have been significant changes in the security conditions during that period, particularly in regard to China’s maritime development, the Japanese government said. The issues covered will include the role of Japanese and US troops in the next 15 years and the security practices in that period, according to a US Defense Ministry representative. Meetings began in Tokyo, and revisions are expected to take a year to complete. In a separate report, high ranking US diplomat Kurt Campbell urged Japanese and Chinese leaders on Thursday to start diplomatic talks on the escalating islands dispute to avoid a potential crisis.
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