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Japan cannot intercept missiles targeting Guam: Cabinet Legislation Bureau chief

  • 2015-06-30 15:00:00
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(Akahata: June 30, 2015 – p. 2)


 Director General Yusuke Yokobatake of the Cabinet Legislation Bureau indicated at the House of Representatives special committee on the security-related bills on June 29 that even if the warmongering laws are passed, these laws “have no provisions” on intercepting ballistic missiles targeting the U.S. territory of Guam, so it will not be possible to do so. This was in response to a question from Democratic Party of Japan member Akihisa Nagashima.


 On this issue, a report issued by the Advisory Panel on the Reconstruction of the Legal Basis for Security (Security Legislation Panel) in May 2014 asserts that failure to intercept ballistic missiles targeting the U.S. when Japan has the capability to do so “should absolutely be avoided, since this will shake the foundation of the Japan-U.S. alliance.” This has been used to justify the exercise of the right to collective self-defense.


 Nagashima asked if it is possible to intercept missiles fired in “peacetime” – when Japan is not subject to an armed attack – targeting Guam. Defense Minister Gen Nakatani replied that under the present situation, this will not be possible because this will constitute the exercise of the collective defense right. Yokobatake further stated that even after the warmongering laws authorizing the exercise of this right are passed, “Japan can only respond to missile attacks on Japan.” (Abridged)

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