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Japan Plans to Build Additional Fuel and Munitions Depots Close to Taiwan

Japanese Minister of Defense Yasukazu Hamada, center, inspects the stealth-capable Mogami at the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force base in Yokosuka, Japan, on Monday. Photo: Reuters
Japanese Minister of Defense Yasukazu Hamada, center, inspects the stealth-capable Mogami at the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force base in Yokosuka, Japan, on Monday. Photo: Reuters

Japan plans to build additional fuel and munitions depots on the Nansei Islands, also known as the Ryukyu Islands, in case the “Taiwan problem” becomes a reality, Japanese Minister of Defense Yasukazu Hamada told the Nikkei Shimbun on Tuesday.

“We will radically strengthen the defense capabilities, including our capacity for sustained and flexible deployment,” he said.

Hamada said the first step toward realizing that goal would be the construction of new munitions depots for the Japan Self-Defense Forces on Amami Oshima, which lies about 800km to the northeast of Taiwan proper, between Kyushu and Okinawa.

Establishing forward fuel and munitions depots would allow Japan to better support US military operations should a conflict break out in the Taiwan Strait, the newspaper said.

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