Tokyo has won the support of the U.K. for its attempt to engage the country's strictly defensive military in operations abroad. The U.S. and Australia have already announced their backing for Japan to engage in what is called "collective self-defense," allowing it to send troops to an ally which is in some way under threat.
British Foreign Secretary William Hague, who is visiting Japan, said Britain would "certainly welcome the ability in practical ways to work more easily with Japan on the issues of international peace and security."
In a press conference with Hague, Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida said, "I explained that Japan plans to contribute more proactively than before to regional and global peace and stability under the banner of proactive pacifism."
The tortured phrase "proactive pacifism" refers to moves to change the island country's pacifist postwar constitution, which bans military operations abroad.
The two countries agreed last year to hold annual strategic talks.
Kishida took aim at China and said it is in the mutual interest of Japan and the U.K. to ensure that Asian countries "respect international regulations" and are encouraged to develop peacefully.
The rightwing administration of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has been engaged in a diplomatic full-court press to gain international support for Japan's right to collective self-defense.
Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop announced her government's support on Tuesday, following the U.S.