The Japanese government will develop a new plan for its missile defence systems by the end of the current year, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Friday, in the wake of Tokyo’s decision in June to abandon the deployment of two US-made Aegis Ashore systems.
“In response to the escalating security situation near Japan, it is planned to develop a new program of action [for security],” Abe was quoted by the Kyodo News agency as saying.
Japan’s new security strategy will also be in keeping with Article 9 of the country’s constitution, which Tokyo currently interprets as allowing a military for self-defence purposes.
In late June, Japanese Defense Minister Taro Kono announced that Tokyo had abandoned its plans to deploy two US-made Aegis Ashore land-based missile systems in the country. At the time, Kono cited cost and technical issues with the systems as motivating the decision to pull out of the deal.
The Aegis Ashore systems were intended to bolster Japan’s defence capability in relation to North Korea.