SDF Could Be Used to Rescue Japanese in South Korea: Inada (News)
Tokyo, April 18 (Jiji Press)—Tokyo would consider using the Self-Defense Forces to rescue Japanese nationals staying in South Korea in the event of an emergency on the Korean Peninsula, Defense Minister Inada Tomomi said Tuesday.
Japan would consider applying the SDF law to take protective measures for Japanese nationals abroad and transport them back to Japan if it becomes difficult for them to use private regular flights to evacuate from the peninsula, Inada told the House of Representatives Security Committee.
The national security laws that entered into force last year have enabled the SDF to guard Japanese nationals abroad using weapons and take other protective measures for them, including rescue operations.
"We are making necessary preparations and holding discussions among relevant government agencies to get ready for a situation in which protection and rescue of Japanese nationals on the Korean Peninsula become necessary," Inada said.
Regarding the possible use of SDF troops in such an operation, the minister also said, "Necessary preparations have been made, and exercises have been carried out."[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]