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HOME  > Past issues  > 2015 August 12 - 18  > MOD already plans to reorganize SDF units in line with war bills
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2015 August 12 - 18 TOP3 [POLITICS]

MOD already plans to reorganize SDF units in line with war bills

August 12, 2015
Japanese Communist Party lawmaker Koike Akira revealed on August 11 at an Upper House special committee debating the controversial national security legislation that the Defense Ministry has drawn up a plan to reorganize units of Japan’s Self-Defense Forces on the assumption that the war-related bills will be enacted in August.

During the committee session, Koike presented an internal document of the ministry’s Joint Staff Office (JSO). That document, entitled “Regarding the Guidelines for Japan-U.S. Defense Cooperation and the Legislation for Peace and Security”, appears to have been produced just after the Abe government proposed the related bills to the Diet in mid-May.

The document assumes that the war legislation will be enacted as early as by the end of August and come into force six months later, in February 2016. It also states that based on the new legislation, SDF troops dispatched to South Sudan will be allowed to use arms from March 2016 in order to “rescue” civilians and “assist” foreign troops.

Koike urged the government to withdraw the war bills immediately, stressing that the ministry’s conduct is similar to the Imperial Japanese Army’s arbitrary actions during World War II.

Defense Minister Nakatani Gen refused to discuss the details of the papers while acknowledging that the ministry prepared the document. Due to protests from opposition parties, the committee meeting was often suspended and ended up breaking up.

The JCP legislator told reporters following the committee session that the Abe administration and the defense authorities are trying to deceive the general public. He went on to express his intent to continue to pursue the minister’s responsibility for the issue.
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