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SECURITY > Self-Defense Forces

GOJ acknowledges purchase of Mage Island

  • December 3, 2019
  • , Asahi, Mainichi, Nikkei, Sankei
  • JMH Summary

Asahi wrote that Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga acknowledged at a news conference on Monday that the Ministry of Defense reached a basic agreement with the owner of Mageshima for the purchase of the island in Kagoshima Prefecture. The island has been selected as a candidate site for the transfer of the U.S. military’s field carrier landing practice (FCLP) from Iwo Island. Suga was quoted as saying the two parties reached a basic agreement on Nov. 29 on the government’s purchase of the outcrop for 16 billion yen ($146 million). Asahi wrote that Suga expressed the GOJ’s position that the purchase price is reasonable and cited the possibility of the island being used as an SDF operational base in the event of large-scale disasters. In response to the concern expressed by the municipal government of Nishinoomote, which owns 1% of the island, about hosting U.S. military drills there, Suga said it is important to obtain the understanding and support of the local community and the GOJ will provide an explanation of the proposed training once the purchase has been formally agreed upon. Sankei, Mainichi, and Nikkei ran similar reports, quoting Suga as also saying it is important to acquire a site for a permanent FCLP facility at an early date.

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