MSDF Ships Make 1st Port Call at Papua WWII Battlefield
Tokyo, Oct. 4 (Jiji Press)--Two Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force vessels recently made the first MSDF port call at Papua New Guinea's Rabaul, where a fierce battle took place during the Pacific War, part of World War II.
Crew members of the training ship Kashima and destroyer Inazuma, both on a long-distance training cruise, interacted with local people and learned the history there late last month.
During the Pacific War, Rabaul, once ruled by Australia, was seized by Japan, which built an air base there. As many pilots died, the city was called a "grave of crew members."
According to the MSDF, the two vessels stayed at Rabaul for three days through Sunday.
The two ships had a total of about 580 crew members, including some 190 low-level officers who recently finished the officer candidate course.
[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]