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HOME  > Past issues  > 2013 December 4 - 10  > SDF daily monitors its members with foreign partners
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2013 December 4 - 10 [SDF]

SDF daily monitors its members with foreign partners

December 6, 2013
Japan’s Self-Defense Forces put under surveillance its members whose partners are from “specified” countries, former SDF officials told Akahata recently.

The defense authorities conduct close background checks on SDF members under the pretext that it is essential to judge the suitability of personnel for handling defense secrets. SDF members are required to enter in a personal information form their family structures, friendship relations, and even their thoughts and beliefs.

If an SDF member is married to or living with a foreigner, the member has to submit to the authorities a copy of their alien registration card.

A former SDF official who was involved in its intelligence activities told Akahata that if an SDF member’s spouse is from “specified” countries, the member is rated at the lowest level for handling classified information. The specified countries are what they refer to as “unfriendly” nations such as Russia, China, and North Korea.

Lowest-ranked staff are designated as “X”. X members are excluded from duties related to secret matters and they are promoted more slowly than others.

Furthermore, the authorities place them under daily surveillance. The SDF Intelligence Security Command organizes a surveillance team comprised of about five people, including X’s immediate boss, colleagues, and other members living in the neighborhood. The team monitors not only X but also his/her partner. When they find some “change”, they will report it to the authorities immediately. Even if the couple divorces, the unit continues keeping a close eye on them.

An ex-Ground SDF senior officer said, “Discrimination against staff members due to their spouses’ citizenship goes on openly in the SDF, although the Constitution guarantees freedom of marriage for the general public. The state secrets law will lead to further violations of human rights.”

Past related article:
> I listed all my friends’ names in background check form: former SDF official [November 18, 2013]

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