Japan Decides to Possess Counterstrike Capabilities

Politics

Tokyo, Dec. 16 (Jiji Press)--The Japanese government on Friday revised the country's three key national security documents to include plans for the country to possess counterstrike capabilities and deploy U.S.-made Tomahawk cruise missiles.

The revisions, made in response to China and North Korea ramping up their military activities, marked a drastic shift in Japan's postwar security policies, which were largely dependent on the U.S. military's strike capabilities, under the pacifist Constitution.

The changes were approved at a meeting of the government's National Security Council and an extraordinary cabinet meeting.

"It will be essential to possess counterstrike capabilities, which provide deterrence to make an opponent country hold back from mounting an attack," Prime Minister Fumio Kishida told a news conference after the revisions.

In the revised National Security Strategy, one of the three documents, the government stressed the need for Japan to have capabilities to carry out counterattacks on enemy missile-firing bases, noting that it has become "increasingly difficult to fully address missile threats with the existing missile defense network alone."

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press