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HOME  > Past issues  > 2007 August 1 - 21  > Japan and U.S. sign agreement on military secrecy
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2007 August 1 - 21 [US FORCES]

Japan and U.S. sign agreement on military secrecy

August 11, 2007
The Japanese and the U.S. governments on August 10 concluded the General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA) that requires Japan to handle the latest military technologies and other confidential military information provided by the United States in the same manner that the U.S. adopts them.

This agreement will not only accelerate the military integration between Japan and the U.S. but infringe on the public right to know.

U.S.-supplied confidential military information can be in any form and medium ranging from military technologies, equipments, and documents to oral information, images, and electronic and magnetic data.

Under the GSOMIA, the Japanese government must classify each piece of military information as “top secret,” “secret”, or “confidential” as the U.S. does, and limit access to the information accordingly. The government is also required to enter into confidentiality contracts with private companies when it provides them with such information.

The Japanese military industry has called on the government to conclude the GSOMIA because the agreement will give considerable advantage to the companies by facilitating the administrative procedures in the U.S., thus enabling them to win contracts for repair works of U.S. war vessels and purchase equipment more easily.

The conclusion of the GSOMIA will place national government employees under constant pressure and adversely affect information disclosure under the information disclosure law. - Akahata, August 11, 2007
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