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Japan Innovation Party doesn’t condone minesweeping operations by SDF

  • 2015-05-07 15:00:00
  • , Nikkei
  • Translation

(Nikkei: May 6, 2015 – p. 2)


 The Japan Innovation Party has no intention to condone the exercise of the right to collective self-defense in connection with minesweeping operations in the Strait of Hormuz by the Self-Defense Forces (SDF). The government and ruling parties stipulate minesweeping operations in their security legislation. Taking the stance of accepting the limited use of the right of collective self-defense by saying that “the party accepts the scope which is regarded as individual self-defense under international law,” according to party leader Kenji Eda, the JIP will apply stricter measures. The party will put together countermeasures after the Golden Week holidays.


 The government and ruling coalition define situations in which concerned countries with which Japan has close ties come under armed attack and that clearly threaten Japan’s existence as “crisis situations.” The JIP plans to respond by calling for narrowing the definition with such clauses as “if Japan does nothing, it will probably be attacked.”


 The government feels it is highly likely that the Japanese economy would greatly suffer from an oil crisis if mines were laid in the Strait of Hormuz. For this reason, the government recognizes this as a crisis situation and plans to enable the SDF to conduct minesweeping operations before the end of a conflict by allowing SDF personnel to exercise the right of collective self-defense. However, the JIP does not condone the exercise of the right to collective self-defense for economic crises.


 The opposition party’s stance on other issues is close to the position of the government and ruling parties. The party approves the SDF’s protection of U.S. vessels transporting Japanese nationals. It intends to include geographical constraints on the contingency law and the expansion of UN peacekeeping operations in its countermeasures. The party says that the SDF can support foreign militaries in carrying out international contributions only based on UN resolutions.

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