Japan's new Defence Minister, Tomomi Inada, warned North Korea and China in her troop review on Thursday. She singled out North Korean provocations and Chinese use of "force" in territorial disputes in the review and warned the two countries of dire consequences if they don't mend their ways.
In the wake of North Korea's recent missile launch, Inada said, "North Korea is repeating militarily provocative acts such as nuclear testing and a series of ballistic missile launches."
On Wednesday, North Korea fired a test missile that landed in Japanese-controlled waters for the first time and created alarm in Tokyo.
Moreover, it was very recently that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe expressed deep concerns about China's aggressive stance in territorial disputes.
Inada, who is a close confidante of Abe said, "China has rapidly become active in waters and airspace surrounding (Japan) and it continues its attempt to change the status quo through force."
Prime Minister Abe appointed Tomomi Inada as the defence minister during the cabinet reshuffling on August 3.
Inada, previously the ruling party policy chief, is the second woman to hold the defence post.
The 57-year-old's views include a desire to make changes to Japan's US-imposed constitution that renounces the right to wage war.
However, analysts fear that the appointment of Inada will worsen Japan's friction with China. Japan is already at loggerhead with China over disputed islands in the East China Sea and China's expansion in the South China Sea.
The cabinet reshuffle came as Abe is trying to boost up economic growth, handle multiple diplomatic challenges and eyes the possibility of staying in office.
Abe also appointed Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Hiroshige Seko as the economy, trade and industry minister but retained Foreign Minister, Fumio Kishida and Finance Minister Taro Aso.