Kono: Msdf Ship To Start Operating In Middle East

Kono: MSDF ship to start operating in Middle East

Japan's Defense Minister Taro Kono says a Maritime Self-Defense Force destroyer will start operating in the Middle East as soon as Wednesday.

The government dispatched the destroyer Takanami and aircraft to the Middle East for an intelligence gathering operation to safeguard commercial ships with links to Japan. The Takanami left the Yokosuka base, near Tokyo, on February 2.

Kono Inspects Destroyer, The Takanami

Kono inspects destroyer, the Takanami

Japanese Defense Minister Taro Kono has given a talk to the crew of a Maritime Self-Defense Force destroyer that will set out in early February for a mission in the Middle East.

Japan's government issued an order earlier this month to dispatch a destroyer and aircraft to the Middle East for an intelligence-gathering operation designed to safeguard commercial ships with links to Japan.

Kono Downplays Risks Of Sdf Middle East Mission

Kono downplays risks of SDF Middle East mission

Japanese Defense Minister Taro Kono has downplayed the danger to the Self-Defense Forces' intelligence-gathering mission in the Middle East. The government hopes the information will help safeguard commercial ships at a time of regional tension.

Kono discussed the mission in an exclusive interview with NHK World on Thursday.

Kono: Sdf Liaison Officer Working At Us Command

Kono: SDF liaison officer working at US command

Japanese Defense Minister Taro Kono has said a liaison officer has started working at a US command center for a Self-Defense Force intelligence-gathering mission in the Middle East.

Kono attended an Upper House committee session on Friday about the mission aimed at ensuring the safety of Japan-related shipping operating in the region.

Kono Calls For China's Action Before Xi's Visit

Kono calls for China's action before Xi's visit

Japan's defense minister urged Beijing to work toward improving the situation regarding China's increasing maritime activities ahead of President Xi Jinping's planned spring visit to Japan.

Taro Kono made the call Tuesday during a speech at Washington-based think tank the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Kono Inspects Japan-us Parachute Drill

Kono inspects Japan-US parachute drill

Japanese Defense Minister Taro Kono has inspected a parachute drill by the Ground Self-Defense Force and the US military. The exercise is aimed at preparing for a possible attack on Japan's remote islands.

Kono visited Camp Narashino near Tokyo where the SDF's only parachute unit, the 1st Airborne Brigade, conducted this year's first exercise on Sunday.

Kono Issues Order For Sdf Dispatch To Middle East

Kono issues order for SDF dispatch to Middle East

Japanese Defense Minister Taro Kono has issued an order to send an intelligence-gathering mission to the Middle East to help ensure the safe navigation of commercial vessels.

Kono ordered the dispatch of two patrol planes and one destroyer at a meeting with senior ministry and Self-Defense Forces officials on Friday.

Kono To Order Sdf Dispatch To Middle East

Kono to order SDF dispatch to Middle East

Japan's Defense Minister Taro Kono will order the dispatch of a Self-Defense Force mission to the Middle East on Friday amid heightened tensions in the region.

The move is aimed at increasing intelligence-gathering capability to ensure that commercial ships with links to Japan can safely navigate waters in the Middle East.

Kono Visits Oman To Explain Sdf Mission

Kono visits Oman to explain SDF mission

Japan's Defense Minister has visited Oman to explain a plan to use an Omani port to provide supplies for a Japanese Self-Defense Force ship.

Taro Kono met with Omani Defense Minister Sayyid Badr bin Saud al-Busaidi on Sunday, two days after Japan's Cabinet approved a plan to send an SDF destroyer to the Middle East and to use SDF aircraft that are based in the East African nation of Djibouti.

Kono Inspects Sdf Unit In Djibouti

Kono inspects SDF unit in Djibouti

Japan's defense minister has inspected a Self-Defense Force unit in the East African nation of Djibouti following Cabinet approval of an SDF mission in the Middle East.

Taro Kono visited the unit on Saturday. Its members have been engaged in anti-piracy missions in the Gulf of Aden.

Kono Urges S.korea To Stay In Gsomia

Kono urges S.Korea to stay in GSOMIA

Japanese Defense Minister Taro Kono has expressed hope that South Korea will retract its decision to scrap an intelligence-sharing pact between the two countries before it expires on Saturday.

Seoul maintains it will not extend the General Security of Military Information Agreement, or GSOMIA, until Japan drops export controls against it.

Kono, Abe React To N.korea Missile Launch

Kono, Abe react to N.Korea missile launch

Japan's Defense Minister Taro Kono says North Korea fired two short-range ballistic missiles on Thursday afternoon.

Speaking to reporters, Kono said the two missiles were fired from the western part of North Korea at around 4:35 p.m. and flew eastward. He said they are believed to have flown 350 to 400 kilometers across land and reached an altitude of about 100 kilometers.

Kono Willing To Meet S.korean Defense Minister

Kono willing to meet S.Korean defense minister

Japanese Defense Minister Taro Kono says he is ready to sit down with his South Korean counterpart during a meeting of Asia-Pacific defense ministers in Thailand next month.

Kono is considering traveling to Bangkok in mid-November to join the international meeting.