Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida has stressed the need for G7 leaders to show a united front to prevent other countries from drawing the “wrong lessons” from Russia’s war on Ukraine, in an apparent reference to Chinese muscle-flexing in the Indo-Pacific. Kishida highlighted the severity of the security situation surrounding Japan on Sunday during a Group of Seven summit in southern Germany, citing Beijing’s dispatch of ships to waters around the Diaoyu Islands , which Japan calls the Senkakus, and its gas field explorations in the East China Sea as attempts to change the status quo by force. “We have seen attempts to change the status quo by force continuing and increasing in the Indo-Pacific,” Kishida was quoted by a senior Japanese government official as telling his G7 counterparts. “We need to ensure other countries do not draw wrong lessons from the situation in Ukraine,” he said, calling for the safeguarding of the rules-based international order. With North Korea continuing to launch ballistic missiles and apparently making preparations for a nuclear test, Kishida said the international community should not give Pyongyang the impression that “a window of opportunity to proceed with missile development” is open. Kishida also called for China to enhance transparency regarding its nuclear arsenal, according to the Japanese official. Kishida made the remarks during a session of the G7 club of wealthy nations on diplomacy and security while explaining that Japan will fundamentally bolster its defence within five years with a substantial increase in relevant spending. Japan’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party has asked the Kishida government to increase the defence budget to the equivalent of at least 2 per cent of gross domestic product, the spending target for Nato nations. Japan, Vietnam pledge closer ties amid ‘serious concerns’ over South China Sea Japan, known for its pacifist constitution, has long capped its defence budget at around 1 per cent of GDP, or about 5 trillion yen (US$37 billion) in recent years. Following the G7 meeting, Kishida is set to attend a two-day Nato summit starting on Wednesday, becoming the first Japanese prime minister to do so, after the 30-member transatlantic alliance invited Asia-Pacific partners such as Japan, South Korea and Australia to the gathering. Leaders at the summit are expected to endorse a new strategic concept defining the security challenges facing the alliance, including China’s rapid militarisation and efforts to weaken the rules-based international order. Tensions remain high between Tokyo and Beijing over the uninhabited Diaoyu Islands , which are are administered by Japan but claimed by China. Japan’s territorial disputes: China, South Korea, Russia and more In the run-up to the summit, Japan also conveyed strong concerns to China over suspected gas exploration in a contested area of the East China Sea. The G7 groups Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United States plus the European Union.