By MARI YAMAGUCHI
TOKYO (AP) — Japan can now give Vietnam defense equipment and technology under an agreement signed by the two countries Saturday. They’re stepping up military cooperation amid worries about China’s growing military influence. Japan’s defense ministry said it plans to deepen defense ties through multinational joint exercises and other means. The ministry said details about the transfer of specific equipment, including naval vessels, will be worked out in subsequent talks. The meeting between the Japanese and Vietnamese defense ministers in Hanoi coincided with a visit by China’s foreign minister. The agreement comes two weeks after the U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris travelled to Vietnam to strengthen ties with the Southeast Asian nation.