PAC-3 Interceptors Deployed in Western Japan amid N. Korea Threat (News)
Tokyo, Aug. 12 (Jiji Press)—Japan's Ministry of Defense deployed Patriot Advanced Capability-3, or PAC-3, ground-to-air guided missiles at Ground Self-Defense Force bases in the Chūgoku and Shikoku regions on Saturday, in response to North Korea's plan to fire ballistic missiles over western Japan to Guam.
PAC-3 interceptor units from the Air SDF's 4th Air Defense Missile Group based in Gifu Prefecture left Friday night for the GSDF's Izumo, Kaitaichi, Matsuyama, and Kōchi bases in Shimane, Hiroshima, Ehime, and Kōchi Prefectures, respectively.
The deployment is aimed at making Japan better prepared for contingencies, including North Korean missiles or their debris falling onto Japanese territory.
Earlier this week, North Korea warned that it is considering a plan to fire four Hwasong-12 intermediate-range ballistic missiles over Shimane, Hiroshima, and Kōchi into waters around the US Pacific territory.
In its two-layer missile defense system, Japan also uses Standard Missile 3, or SM-3, interceptors mounted on Aegis-class destroyers of the Maritime SDF.