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Japan’s Network Diplomacy with Neighboring Countries: Dilemma over Issues of Taiwan and DPRK amid the U.S.-China Strategic Competition

OH SEUNG HEE 1

1서울대학교 일본연구소

Accredited

ABSTRACT

This study analyzes the changes in the Japanese government’s network diplomacy with neighboring countries amid the outbreak of COVID-19 and intensifying U.S.-China strategic competition. Japan confirms its position between the U.S. and China and redefines its identity in relation to neighboring countries. While strengthening cooperation with the U.S., Japan is actively sending Japanese contexts online/offline through its expanded networks, including subtle relationships with China and Taiwan and the issue of North Korean abductions of Japanese citizens. The network diplomacy between South Korea and Japan has not been working smoothly due to the worsening relations between the two countries. For Japan, South Korea is not categorized as a like-minded countries, but Japan calls for cooperation among South Korea, the U.S., and itself regarding the North Korean issue. While Japan and Taiwan are moving toward strengthening solidarity by emphasizing shared values, a pattern remains of emphasizing and managing relations with mainland China. Japan’s policy toward neighboring countries is quite similar to the United States’ Asia policy, but the Japan-led network diplomacy with China and the Korean Peninsula also operates in conjunction with the United States. This paper discusses the changed characteristics and the dilemma of Japan’s network diplomacy, which links its position on neighboring countries internally and externally amid intensifying international competition between the U.S. and China.

Citation status

* References for papers published after 2022 are currently being built.