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Japan approves deployment of new US missile system

19 December 2017 9:59

Japan’s cabinet has approved the deployment of the US military’s ground-based Aegis missile interceptor system in an attempt to counter perceived threats from North Korea.

“North Korea’s nuclear and missile development has become a greater and more imminent threat for Japan’s national security, and we need to drastically improve our ballistic missile defense capability to protect Japan continuously and sustainably,” the government said in a statement on Tuesday.

North Korea fired two missiles over Japan this year, which Tokyo could not shoot down because of constitutional restraints. Pyongyang has also formerly threatened to “sink” Japan in the event of war.

Japan, along with its main ally, the United States, has been opposed to North Korea over its weapons programs. It has been dependent on the US for protection. The new missile system would be added to Japan’s current missile systems consisting of US land-based Patriot missiles and Aegis-equipped destroyers.

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