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HOME  > Past issues  > 2011 September 21 - 27  > JCP Kasai opposes SDF dispatch to South Sudan
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2011 September 21 - 27 [SDF]

JCP Kasai opposes SDF dispatch to South Sudan

September 25 & 26, 2011
Japanese Communist Party Lower House member Kasai Akira expressed opposition to the dispatch of the Self-Defense Forces to South Sudan to take part in U.N. peacekeeping operations on a TV debate program on September 25.

On September 24, the government sent a survey team to South Sudan in preparation for sending the Ground SDF there.

Kasai pointed out that sending the SDF to this very dangerous region may lead to moves to relax the constitutional ban on their use of force. Japan should rather consider how to provide civilian support based on Article 9 of the Constitution, he stressed.

Democratic Party of Japan Policy Chief Maehara Seiji reiterated his calls for reviewing the three principles banning arms exports and easing restrictions on the SDF’s use of weapons in overseas operations.

In response to Maehara’s proposals, Liberal Democratic Party Policy Research Council Chair Ishiba Shigeru said, “Both proposals are very reasonable.” Ishii Keiichi, Ishiba’s counterpart in the Komei Party also supported the call by saying that weapons exports and joint arms developments can be flexibly dealt with because the government already recognizes exceptional measures.

Kasai stated that Maehara’s two proposals are both unconstitutional, citing the 1981 unanimous resolutions to ban weapons exports adopted by both Houses as well as the Foreign Ministry’s statement that Japan should play its international role by maintaining its rejection of weapons exports.

“At a time when Japan’s diplomatic role is becoming more important, the regressive moves made during the LDP-Komei government should not be allowed to go any further,” said Kasai.
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