Japan to develop longer-range anti-ship missiles

Tokyo: Japan has announced that it is developing long-range anti-ship missiles to target the destroyers sailing dangerously close to the Japanese marine borders. Japanese Defence Minister Nobuo Kishi declared, ‘The situation in the East China Sea has become complicated, and it becomes necessary for Japan to act against the situation.’ Although Defence Minister Kishi did not make a direct mention, Japan is increasing the range of its missiles because of the Chinese threat.   

This is the first major change in the Japanese defence policy since Yoshihide Suga took over as the Prime Minister of Japan. As per this, Japan will be manufacturing long-range missiles that could be launched from destroyers as well as fighter jets. The range of the missiles currently used by the Japanese military will be increased. It is claimed that with this will strengthen the Japanese missiles for the security of the island groups in the East China Sea.   

Japanese Defence Minister Kishi gave information regarding this change in the defence policy. For this, Kishi reminded the threats to the Okinawa island group and the islands in the East China Sea. Japan has already deployed anti-ship missiles with a range of 200 kilometres on the Okinawa Islands. The Japanese Defence Minister claimed that in this scenario, with the long-range missiles, free movement of the foreign ships could be carried out in the A2AD, meaning Anti Access Area Denial marine sector. Japan is also trying to develop cruise missiles which would be capable of hitting Chinese bases. Japan will even be attempting development of air to surface missiles. Japan has indicated that the concerned missiles can be used to target the missile depots of North Korea. At the same time, the Japanese defence ministry informed on Tuesday that the new Japanese destroyers would have the super-advanced version of the Aegis Radar instead of the old Aegis Radar. China is claiming rights in some regions, including the Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea. In the area of these island groups, China is challenging Japan by sending its destroyers, coast guard vessels and fishing boats. Only last week, the Japanese Defence Minister had said that the Japanese islands are under threat from Chinese destroyers. Kishi had asserted that Japan has its sovereign right over the Senkaku islands during a meeting with the Chinese Defence Minister. Kishi had warned that Japan would never accept the Chinese intrusion and the explanations given by China regarding this region.  

Meanwhile, Defence Minister Kishi had appealed that even Germany should send its destroyer for a free and open Indo-Pacific region. India, the United States, Japan and Australia are cooperating in the Indo-Pacific region, and the United Kingdom and France also have sent their destroyers to this region. China had expressed displeasure over the moves made by India, US and other allies. In these circumstances, Japan seems to have increased the Chinese headache by appealing to Germany to send its destroyer. 

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