Japan to Probe SDF over Sexual Assault Allegations

Society Politics

Tokyo, Sept. 6 (Jiji Press)--Japanese Defense Minister Yasukazu Hamada said Tuesday that he has ordered a special probe covering the entire Self-Defense Forces in response to sexual assault allegations.

The special defense inspection will be conducted after former Ground SDF member Rina Gonoi, 22, sought a third-party reinvestigation into alleged sexual assault committed by then colleagues last year.

"Harassment is a violation of basic human rights and must not happen," Hamada told a news conference.

This is the first time in five years for the ministry to conduct a special defense inspection, in which its Inspector General's Office of Legal Compliance investigates malpractice independently.

The last such inspection was carried out over a cover-up scandal related to daily reports of GSDF troops' activities in South Sudan, where they were dispatched to join a U.N. peacekeeping mission.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press