Despite NATO’s deepening relations with Indo-Pacific countries, including plans to open an office in Japan, the military alliance is unlikely to get involved in any potential conflict in Asia, said the chairman of the Munich Security Conference, Christoph Heusgen, on Sunday.

The plan to open a liaison office in Tokyo demonstrates the interest of NATO countries in regional stability and underlines the close partnership between NATO and Japan, Heusgen said ahead of the MSC’s first-ever Munich Leaders Meeting (MLM) in Tokyo, which starts Monday.

“However, when it comes to active involvement of NATO in possible conflict situations (in the Indo-Pacific), this is by definition excluded in the treaty,” he said, pointing out that such a scenario would rather be dealt with on an individual country basis.