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Japan Military Head: F-35 Can Help Manage Regional Tensions

F35Japan’s military top brass remain committed to purchasing Lockheed Martin’s F-35 fighter jets, the country’s top uniformed military officer has told Reuters.

Shigeru Iwasaki, chief of the Japanese Self-Defence Forces’ Joint Staff, told Reuters he believed the F-35 was the country’s best choice as it handles tensions with both China and North Korea.

Japan plans to buy 42 F-35s and the first four jets are scheduled for delivery by March 2017, Kiyoshi Takenaka writes.

 “There were various candidates but I still believe the F-35 is the best fighter when we think about Japan’s future national security,” Iwasaki told Reuters.

Iwasaki also addressed the recent events in North Korea during the interview and said the country is adequately protected by its missile defense system, which Takenaka reports has both Standard Missile-3 and Patriot Advanced Capability-3 interceptors.

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