08:07 GMT30 March 2020
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    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - US Deputy Defense Secretary Pat Shanahan and Japan’s Space Policy Minister Masaji Matsuyama have discussed how to advance cooperation in space amid tensions in the Asia-Pacific region.

    "The officials discussed the importance of space to our mutual defense, and how the US and Japan can expand our cooperation in this critical domain as we prepare for contingencies," Pentagon spokesman Jeff Davis said.

    The talks focused on how space fits into the current Asia-Pacific security situation and how the allies can increase cooperative efforts in satellite communications, hosted payloads and Japanese participation in US space war-gaming.

    The two, he said, had agreed to continue strengthening the US-Japanese alliance by integrating space into political and military discussions at all levels. The US official reiterated his country's commitment to its alliances in the region.

    Washington has been particularly active recently in the field of space defense. DARPA announced this week, that it is seeking help from several unspecified organizations to help with its program called Hallmark, which aims to develop tools and technologies to plan, assess, and execute US military operations in space.

    Also, recently United Launch Alliance company has announced the launch of a US spy satellite "to replenish the US spy satellite fleet." The launch comes days after another launch by rival SpaceX with a secret US government spacecraft called Zuma, which, according to several reports failed to reach the orbit.


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