The mayor of Misawa City in Aomori Prefecture has decided to allow the resumption of flight operations of F-35 stealth fighter jets deployed at an Air Self-Defense Force base in the city.
Sources say Misawa mayor Yoshinori Kohiyama will inform the Defense Ministry of his decision as early as Thursday afternoon.
An F-35 jet from the base crashed into the sea off northern Japan in April. The ministry has since suspended flights of the 12 remaining F-35s deployed at the base.
The Defense Ministry says it will seek the understanding of residents before resuming flight operations of the fighters.
Kohiyama had indicated that he would listen to the opinions of the city assembly and residents before making a decision. Sources say he decided to give the green light as the assembly and communities near the base did not express strong opposition.
The Defense Ministry is explaining the cause of the crash and measures to prevent a recurrence to the governments of Aomori Prefecture and Misawa City.
Attention is focused on what decision the prefecture will make on the resumption of flights.