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Miyakojima missiles transport to be postponed

  • August 27, 2021
  • , Okinawa Times , p. 27
  • JMH Translation

Regarding its plan to transport weaponry to the Ground Self-Defense Force’s Bora training ground (Shirobe Bora, Miyakojima City), the Ministry of Defense decided to postpone the transport of missiles originally scheduled for the end of the month. A new schedule will be formulated in coordination with the city, whose mayor Zakimi Kazuyuki requested the postponement citing the COVID-19 state of emergency currently effective in the prefecture.

 

The MOD had planned to use Maritime Self-Defense Force vessels to start transporting surface-to-air missiles, surface-to-ship missiles, and other weaponry on Aug. 28. However, the city effectively banned the use of the Port of Hirara, eliminating the prospect of proceeding with the transport as scheduled.

 

On Aug. 26, Ground Self-Defense Force Chief of Staff Yoshida Yoshihide held a press conference during which he said: “We must transport [the weaponry] as soon as possible to maintain our deterrence and counterattack capabilities in the region.” He also added that “it is important to take into consideration the city’s perspective,” indicating the GSDF is prepared to do the utmost to ensure safety and prevent the further spread of COVID-19. (Abridged)

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