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US to deploy 2 more destroyer ships with Aegis anti-missile systems in Japan by 2017

6 April 2014, 11:01 -- The US is going to deploy two more destroyer ships equipped with Aegis anti-missile systems in Japan's waters by 2017. Thus, the number of such US destroyers in Japan will increase to 7. This was announced by US Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel during his visit to Japan.

After a meeting between Mr. Hagel and Japan's Minister of Defense Itsunori Onodera, both ministers said that Japan is strengthening its anti-missile defense because of an increasing threat from North Korea.

In late March, North Korea made two launches of medium-range missiles in the direction of Japan.

The Aegis anti-missile complex consists of anti-aircraft missiles and systems of information gathering and armament control and delivery. If Japan has destroyers equipped with such complexes, this would enable it to shoot down North Korean missiles.

"In a situation of such provocations from North Korea, I would like to attach special importance to close cooperation between Japan and the US," Japan's Minister of Defense said at the beginning of the meeting with his American counterpart, as quoted by NHK TV channel.

After the meeting, both ministers said that they had a free-spoken discussion of several problems of the region around Japan – in particular, they exchanged opinions about the recent launch of North Korean missiles.

Another problem discussed at the meeting was a dispute between Japan and China over a group of islands which the Japanese call Senkaku, and the Chinese - Diaoyutai. Both ministers condemned any attempts of interference in this dispute with force.

This is already the fourth meeting between the US and the Japanese Defense Ministers within this year.

The ministers agreed to try to solve the majority of issues in US-Japanese military cooperation before the end of 2014.

Source: http://voiceofrussia.com/news/2014_04_06/ US-to-deploy-2-more-destroyer-ships-with-Aegis- anti-missile-systems-in-Japan-by-2017-1055/

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