Archive for the ‘fueling at sea’ Category

Japan rejoins US anti-terrorism mission

January 11, 2008
By ERIC TALMADGE, Associated Press Writer 

TOKYO – Japan‘s defense minister ordered the navy Friday to return to the Indian Ocean on a U.S.-backed anti-terrorism mission, ending a three-month hiatus but deepening political divisions with the opposition.

Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force's supply ship Tokiwa fuels ...
Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force’s supply ship Tokiwa fuels a U.S. Navy vessel, right, in February, 2003 in Arabian Sea. Japan’s upper house of parliament voted Friday, Jan. 11, 2008, to reject legislation that would revive a limited version of Japan’s six-year-long mission to provide fuel and other resources to U.S.-led forces in Indian Ocean, but the ruling party was expected to push the measure into law in the lower chamber. (AP Photo/Kyodo)

Japan had refueled ships since 2001 in support of U.S.-led forces in Afghanistan, but was forced to abandon the mission in November, when the opposition blocked an extension, saying it violated Japan’s pacifist constitution and did not have the United Nations‘ backing.

Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda said he expects the ships to leave by the end of the month, meaning they could be back in the Indian Ocean in February.

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