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Japan To Join Multinational Anti-Piracy Mission
Thursday, June 27, 2013
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Japan will extend by another year its anti-piracy mission off the Somalia coast by deploying one of its two destroyers now in the area to join the multinational naval force against piracy.
The Defense Ministry's Operation Policy Bureau Director-General Testsuro Kuroe explained the plan at a joint meeting of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party policy experts in Tokyo on Tuesday, Japanese media reported.
Two destroyers and two patrol aircraft from Japan's Maritime Self-Defense Force have been deployed in the region since 2009 to escort Japanese and foreign merchant ships off Somalia. The one-year mission based on Japan's anti-piracy law has been extended every year since 2010, and the current mission will expire on July 23.
Kuroe said Japan's operation along with the multinational force would start around December. The multinational force that includes ships from the United States, Britain and China is involved in a policing activity aimed at preventing piracy, he said and emphasized that a Japanese ship joining the activity would never violate the Constitutional ban on use of force.
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