Defense Ministry Denies Organized Cover-Up of GSDF Iraq Logs

Society Politics

Tokyo, May 23 (Jiji Press)--Japan's Defense Ministry on Wednesday denied an organized cover-up of daily logs on the Ground Self-Defense Force's Iraq mission, in a report of its probe into the documents the ministry initially claimed did not exist.

Over the problem, the ministry punished a total of 17 officials for their failure to carry out appropriate clerical work, including officials at the GSDF's former Ground Research and Development Command, now the Training, Evaluation, Research and Development Command. The then command officials took a pay cut or a reprimand.

In the top brass, Adm. Katsutoshi Kawano, chief of staff at the SDF Joint Staff, was admonished, and an oral warning was given to Vice Defense Minister Katashi Toyota.

The report attributed the former research department's failure to report the discovery of the documents in March 2017 to a lack of understanding about the probe, concluding that there was no deliberate cover-up.

In February last year, then Defense Minister Tomomi Inada verbally asked the Joint Staff about the existence of the documents, after telling parliament that the ministry could not find them.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press