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Germany and Japan conduct joint military drills

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The German Air Force transport aircraft A400M Atlas arrive at Hyakuri Air Base in Ibaraki-Prefecture, Japan on Wednesday. This is part of the German Air Force's large-scale exercise "Rapid Pacific 2022" to the Asian region and German Air Force has dispatch group of several aircraft to the Japan for the first time. Photo by Keizo Mori/UPI | <a href="/News_Photos/lp/b1e9c8d56fe6c42688b57948bb01c448/" target="_blank">License Photo</a>
The German Air Force transport aircraft A400M Atlas arrive at Hyakuri Air Base in Ibaraki-Prefecture, Japan on Wednesday. This is part of the German Air Force's large-scale exercise "Rapid Pacific 2022" to the Asian region and German Air Force has dispatch group of several aircraft to the Japan for the first time. Photo by Keizo Mori/UPI | License Photo

Sept. 28 (UPI) -- Germany and Japan conducted their first joint military drills on Wednesday in Japan, as Berlin seeks to expand its security commitments in the region.

Three F-2 fighter jets from Japan's Air Self-Defense Force and three German Eurofighter jets participated in formation training to improve communication and tactical skills. The drills, which last until Friday, took place at the Hyakuri Air Base near Tokyo.

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According to the Global Times, analysts said that the exercises would help boost Germany's joint air combat capabilities in the Asia-Pacific region.

German Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht told the Japan Times that Berlin would see a continuous security commitment to the region.

"The military buildup in the region is picking up speed, geopolitical tensions are exacerbating territorial conflicts and the risk of escalation is increasing," she said. "We are aware that Euro-Atlantic security and Indo-Pacific security are connected. That is why we want to help maintain peace and stability in this important region."

The Japan Times also reported that some critics have argued that developments in China and North Korea pose little or no direct security threat to Germany. However, Lambrecht said that given the Indo-Pacific region's economic and geopolitical importance to both Germany and the whole of Europe, "any conflict there would affect Germany massively, in multiple ways."

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Wednesday's exercises are not Germany's first in the region. The German Air Force took part in military exercises in Australia earlier this month.

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