In a Japan-U.S. joint leaders’ statement issued in May following a meeting in Tokyo, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and U.S. President Joe Biden agreed to work together to strengthen deterrence, while calling on China “to contribute to arrangements that reduce nuclear risks, increase transparency, and advance nuclear disarmament.”

The move by the leaders of Japan and the United States to release a joint statement requesting China to advance nuclear disarmament was a rare one.

The same phrase appeared also in the Japan-U.S. joint statement on the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) issued in January, indicating the two countries’ increasing focus on China’s nuclear capabilities.