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DM Kono inspects Aegis Ashore test facility in Hawaii

NHK reported this morning that Defense Minister Kono inspected a U.S. military missile test facility in Kauai, Hawaii, on Monday. The network said the facility hosts an Aegis Ashore missile defense test complex and a vertical launch system (VLS). After the inspection, Kono spoke to reporters about opposition from candidate sites to the planned deployment of the Aegis Ashore system in Japan. “There’s a childcare facility located very close to this facility, but I was told that there’s no problem with regard to safety,” he reportedly said. “I think the distance between these facilities and residential areas is an important factor, but their safety level is very high.” In addition, Kono reportedly said: “North Korea has deployed the Rodong and numerous other missiles that can reach Japan. We hope to establish missile defense capabilities including the Aegis Ashore system for the defense of the entire country as soon as possible.”

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