Japan, Britain Reach Broad Accord on Reciprocal Access Agreement
London, May 4 (Jiji Press)--The Japanese and British governments reached a broad accord Wednesday on a reciprocal access agreement, which will serve as a legal basis for mutual visits by Japanese Self-Defense Forces personnel and British troops.
The accord, announced by the office of British Prime Minister Boris Johnson to coincide with a visit to the country by Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, is intended to enhance Japan-Britain defense cooperation at a time when security tensions are spreading in the Indo-Pacific region as well following Russia's invasion of Ukraine.
Kishida arrived in Britain earlier on Wednesday on the fifth and final leg of a tour of Southeast Asia and Europe.
The British government also revealed a plan to lift by the end of June its import restrictions on food produced in the northeastern Japan prefecture of Fukushima, which were introduced after the March 2011 triple reactor meltdown at Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc.'s <9501> tsunami crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power station.
The Japan-Britain RAA, designed to implement bilateral defense cooperation smoothly, will, among other things, simplify immigration procedures when troops from one country visit the other for joint exercises or relief activities in times of disaster, and stipulate jurisdiction in case a troop commits a crime or causes an accident in the other's country.
[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]