Defense Ministry will send two officers of the Self Defense Forces (SDF) of Japan to the Sinai Peninsula, Egypt, in the
middle of April as commanders for missions of the Multinational Force and
Observers (MFO). This is the first round of the international cooperation activities
for peace and safety, following the participation in the United Nations’ peace
keeping operations (PKO). The new dispatch is a trial to endorse a series of laws
called the war engagement legislation.
CONSOLIDATES LAWS TO JOIN WARS
is not UN Mission
of Defense Iwaya Takeshi told that the nation will actively contribute to peace
and stability in the Middle East, referring to
a new dispatch of officers for the MFO duty, a mission outside the UN mandate.
the Sinai Peninsula in 1967 when the Six-Day
War was fought. Most of the occupied territory was restored to Egypt in 1979
through a bilateral peace treaty, and since 1982 the US-led military forces
have been deployed in accordance with the treaty. They have supervised in
implementation of the ceasefire provisions on the border areas.
to have multinational force and observers as it did not want the UN to take
initiative in the observation missions. At the moment in total 1,200 troopers
from 12 nations, including US, UK,
France, Italy and Australia, are
assigned to operate. The government of Japan has financially contributed
to the mission since 1988.
to Abe Government
task is the first trial of international cooperation for peace and safety, a
program designed in the revised PKO Act: the law was altered coarsely in the
context of the war engagement legislation in 2015 (implemented in 2016) by the
Abe government. Thus officers from the Ground Self Defense Forces (GSDF) will
be sent for the new mission.
will encourage future participation of Japan’s military in the US-led
multinational forces to bolster its war policy, which will lead to unrestricted
overseas deployment of the SDF.
revised PKO Act authorizes Japanese officers to engage in combat actions and
jointly defend their camps with foreign troops. The PKO mission in South Sudan was the first-round experience. The newly
deployed officers will commit in more belligerent actions.
for overseas operations, the government of Japan
currently operates anti-pirate campaigns in the Aden
Bay off the coast of Somalia and in the command duty in South Sudan, following the withdrawal of GSDF in May,
to the international peace cooperation section of Cabinet Office, the MFO
headquarters offered the Japanese government to dispatch officers to be in
charge of communications among MFO, Egypt
and Israel in the area of
Sharm el-Sheikh, south of Peninsula. To the
Abe government, which boasts of its pro-active peace initiative, the bid means
a right chance to enhance its external military function.
of Parliamentary Approval
the moment five rules are applied in sending PKO troops abroad, relying on a
peace agreement of the relevant parties. They are;
a ceasefire agreement of the conflicting
the parties’ agreement to request Japan’s commitment
strict neutrality of Japanese troops
withdrawal, unless any of the (1), (2) and
(3) is met
authorization of use of weapons of the
minimum and necessary level, and as a new condition,
proposal from an
international organization or a nation
prior approval is necessary from the Diet in dispatching troops. The government,
however, explains it unnecessary to have one when sending commanding personnel.
Abe government discussed joining the MFO duties late last year and sent Sonoura
Kentaro, Adviser to Prime Minister (in charge of national security), and Suzuki
Takako, a parliamentary undersecretary of Ministry of Defense, to the region to
inquire local situations.