Japan’s Largest Warship Heading to South China Sea

Report: Japan’s Largest Warship Heading to South China Sea, will Train with U.S., Indian Navies (excerpt)

By sending its largest warship into the South China Sea, Japan is stating its commitment to free navigation in a region that China considers its own, in contravention of international law and practice. (JMSDF photo)

One of Japan’s largest warship is set to conduct three months of operations in the South China Sea, according to a Monday report by Reuters. The 24,000-ton JS Izumo (DDH-183) will depart in May from its homeport in Yokosuka, Japan for a series of port visits and exercises running into August.

The ship, “will make stops in Singapore, Indonesia, the Philippines and Sri Lanka before joining the Malabar joint naval exercise with Indian and U.S. naval vessels in the Indian Ocean in July,” reported the wire.

“The aim is to test the capability of the Izumo by sending it out on an extended mission,” a source told Reuters. “It will train with the U.S. Navy in the South China Sea.”

A U.S. defense official told USNI News on Monday that there were training events with the Japanese Maritime Self Defense Forces planned for the period but did not outline specifics.

Izumo is one of two helicopter carriers the Japanese have built for the stated claim of anti-submarine warfare and humanitarian aid and disaster relief operations. The ship entered into service in 2015 and its sister ship Kaga is set to commission this year. (end of excerpt)

Click here for the full story, on the USNI News website.

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