Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's ruling coalition won a comfortable majority in the upper house of parliament.
The US is stepping up efforts to defend Japan against threats from North Korea and China. Several disputed islands in the South and East China Sea have the potential to threaten the stability of the entire region.
The governor's election in Tokyo led to a defeat for the opponents of nuclear energy. But in the wake of the Fukushima disaster, the debate about the course of the country's energy policy hasn't been decided yet.
The Japanese prime minister has told the World Economic Forum in Davos that Asia needs military restraint to boost economic growth. Abe's keynote speech kicked off the four-day gathering in Switzerland.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is setting up a network of Asian partners aimed at countering China's influence on the continent. The Southeast Asian association ASEAN has now sided with Japan.
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