[World] Japan to send destroyer through South China Sea to join joint drills off Indonesia
JS Ise at sea in 2012 with two other JMSDF ships [wikimedia]
The Maritime Self-Defense Force said Tuesday
that it will dispatch its destroyer Ise to a
multinational maritime exercise to be hosted by
the Indonesian navy on April 12-16.
The 13,950-ton vessel will travel in the South
China Sea to join the Komodo Exercise set to be
conducted in areas near the western
Indonesian city of Padang.
Japan to send destroyer through South China Sea to join joint drills off Indonesia
Dispatching the Ise has nothing to do with the
U.S. Navy’s freedom of navigation operation
near artificial islands that China built in the
South China Sea, MSDF officials said.
But the move can be seen as a joint effort by
Japan and the United States to counter China’s
maritime assertiveness in the South China Sea.
The Japanese destroyer is also expected to
make a port call in Subic Bay in the
Philippines, where the MSDF submarine
Oyashio arrived on Sunday.
The Ise is based in Kure, Hiroshima Prefecture.
Multiple helicopters can simultaneously land
on and take off from the vessel.
The exercise is expected to include the
participation of member states of the
Association of Southeast Asian Nations plus
several other countries.
Adm. Tomohisa Takei, MSDF chief of staff, told
a news conference he hopes that the MSDF’s
participation in the exercise will improve its
tactical skills and help promote mutual
understanding and trust among the
During the exercise period, an Indonesian-led
international naval review and the Western
Pacific Naval Symposium are scheduled to be
held. Takei is slated to attend both events.