March 28 (UPI) — Japan’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party does not want Tokyo to shy away from dealing with North Korea’s nuclear and missile provocations.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s party has decided to officially propose new policy that could secure a military capability to attack enemy bases, Kyodo news agency reported Wednesday, local time.
The proposal is to be submitted to the administration after being reviewed internally, according to the report.
The LDP stated North Korea’s threats have “entered a new stage,” Japan “should have the capability to confront enemy bases,” and that “a review of the matter should begin immediately.”
Japan’s self-defense forces have so far been unable to attack incoming North Korea missiles.
Projectiles that landed in Japanese territorial waters were not intercepted in 2016 and 2017.
Examples of deterrence measures cited by the LDP include the U.S. missile defense system THAAD and Aegis Ashore, a land-based component of the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense System.
The proposal included a recommendation of earlier deployment of the SM-3 Block IIA, a ship-based interceptor missile.
Japan should also develop early-warning satellites capable of detecting missiles in space, the LDP said.
The ruling party wants more systems in place because the current network of missile defense may be inadequate to intercept multiple missiles that are launched simultaneously.
Under a bilateral security treaty, any military response to an attack on Japan would be undertaken by the United States, but a Japan with a military capability to retaliate could have a negative impact on the U.S.-Japan alliance, Japanese newspaper Nihon Keizai reported.