"Non-existent" Daily Reports on Japan GSDF Mission in Iraq Found
Tokyo, April 2 (Jiji Press)--Daily activity reports of Japanese Ground Self-Defense Force troops dispatched to Iraq in 2004-2006 have been found, although the government had denied the existence of such logs, Defense Minister Itsunori Onodera said Monday.
In February last year, the government said in responses to lawmakers' demand for disclosing the logs that such documents did not exist. At a House of Representatives Budget Committee meeting on Feb. 20 the same year, then Defense Minister Tomomi Inada also denied their existence.
On Feb. 27 this year, however, the GSDF's Ground Staff Office told the ministry's Joint Staff Office that some 14,000 pages of logs recording the troops' activities in Iraq for a total of 376 days were discovered at its health division and the Ground Research and Development Command of the GSDF, Onodera said.
According to the current defense minister, the Iraq logs were uncovered in the course of the ministry's investigation into a cover-up scandal that came to light last year over separate daily reports of GSDF engineering troops in U.N.-led peacekeeping operations in South Sudan in 2011-2017.
Inada resigned to take the blame for the cover-up.
[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]