World

Japan defense report stresses China's threat as Tokyo pushes to give its military greater role

  • FILE - In this Oct. 26, 2014 file photo, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, right, walks by a mock-up of the F-35 fighter jet during the annual Self-Defense Forces Commencement of Air Review at Hyakuri Air Base, north of Tokyo. Japan emphasized China as a threat in escalating regional tensions in this year's annual defense report, approved Tuesday, July 21, 2015 by the Cabinet, as Abe's government tries to convince the public of the need to pass legislation to give Japan's military a greater role.  (AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko, File)

    FILE - In this Oct. 26, 2014 file photo, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, right, walks by a mock-up of the F-35 fighter jet during the annual Self-Defense Forces Commencement of Air Review at Hyakuri Air Base, north of Tokyo. Japan emphasized China as a threat in escalating regional tensions in this year's annual defense report, approved Tuesday, July 21, 2015 by the Cabinet, as Abe's government tries to convince the public of the need to pass legislation to give Japan's military a greater role. (AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this March 31, 2015 file photo, Self-Defense Forces personnel prepare to receive Indian Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar in front of the latest destroyer Izumo of Japan's Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) in Yokosuka, south of Tokyo. Japan emphasized China as a threat in escalating regional tensions in this year's annual defense report, approved Tuesday, July 21 by the Cabinet, as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's government tries to convince the public of the need to pass legislation to give Japan's military a greater role. (AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko, File)

    FILE - In this March 31, 2015 file photo, Self-Defense Forces personnel prepare to receive Indian Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar in front of the latest destroyer Izumo of Japan's Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) in Yokosuka, south of Tokyo. Japan emphasized China as a threat in escalating regional tensions in this year's annual defense report, approved Tuesday, July 21 by the Cabinet, as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's government tries to convince the public of the need to pass legislation to give Japan's military a greater role. (AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this Thursday, July 16, 2015 file photo, an anti-war protester yells while waving a sign that reads: "Don't destroy Article 9 of the constitution" during a rally after Japan's lower house of parliament approved legislation that would expand the role of the nation's military, outside the Parliament building in Tokyo. Japan emphasized China as a threat in escalating regional tensions in this year's annual defense report, approved Tuesday, July 21 by the Cabinet, as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's government tries to convince the public of the need to pass legislation to give Japan's military a greater role. (AP Photo/Shuji Kajiyama, File)

    FILE - In this Thursday, July 16, 2015 file photo, an anti-war protester yells while waving a sign that reads: "Don't destroy Article 9 of the constitution" during a rally after Japan's lower house of parliament approved legislation that would expand the role of the nation's military, outside the Parliament building in Tokyo. Japan emphasized China as a threat in escalating regional tensions in this year's annual defense report, approved Tuesday, July 21 by the Cabinet, as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's government tries to convince the public of the need to pass legislation to give Japan's military a greater role. (AP Photo/Shuji Kajiyama, File)  (The Associated Press)

Japan has emphasized China as a threat in escalating regional tensions as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's government tries to convince the public of the need to pass legislation to give Japan's military a greater role.

The Cabinet on Tuesday approved the report, delayed for more than a week as Abe's ruling party panel demanded mention of additional examples of China's "one-sided" maritime activities, such as undersea gas and oil development in the East China Sea.

The report raised concerns over China's recent reclamation work in the South China Sea, saying it escalated regional tensions.

Abe's ruling coalition has been pushing to pass highly contentious legislation allowing Japan's Self-Defense Force to fight for foreign militaries even when it is not under attack, while expanding its role in international peacekeeping.