Japan on Friday laid the foundation for the country’s defense and security policies for years to come, signaling that Tokyo is now more ready than ever to shed some of the postwar constraints on its military.

Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s government passed revisions to three key security documents after months of debate, outlining a tough new stance in a region where China continues to flex its military muscle near Taiwan, North Korea’s nuclear and missile threats remain unceasing, and Russia's bloody invasion of Ukraine has stoked fears that others in Asia could take a page from their playbook.

“Looking at Japan's surroundings, it is facing the most severe and complex security environment since the end of World War II,” according to the country’s new National Security Strategy (NSS), which also noted growing pressure “by those seeking to unilaterally change the status quo by force.”