Saturday, October 11, 2003

In it to win it?

Japan has decided to continue its supportive role in the war on terror.

Japan's House of Councillor on Friday passed a bill to extend the term of a special antiterrorism law for two years, paving the way for its enactment before a general election on Nov. 9.

The bill cleared the lower house last Friday. The Japanese parliament endorsed the antiterrorism law, which expires on Nov. 1,soon after the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks against the United States.

The ruling coalition, led by Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's Liberal Democratic Party, supported the bill, while the main opposition Democratic Party of Japan opposed it.

Under the law, Japan has sent Maritime Self-Defense Force (MSDF)vessels to the Indian Ocean to refuel foreign naval ships participating in the US-led antiterrorism operations in and around Afghanistan since 2001.

Critics argue the law is not in compliance with Japan's pacifist constitution which forbids the nation to get involved in warfare.

Also, Japan is preparing to send the Self-Defense Forces to Iraq for humanitarian aid and post-war reconstruction under a newly enacted legislation. The leading Asahi Shimbun said Thursday a spearhead of around 100 troops is expected to embark in December.


Post a Comment

<< Home