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Japan’s Defense Minister Minoru Kihara has called for stronger anti-drone measures following the posting of a video on Chinese social media showing a Japanese aircraft carrier docked at a restricted navy port near Tokyo. The video, likely filmed by a drone, prompted a serious security threat assessment by Kihara. This incident comes as Japan is increasing its military capability, particularly with a focus on its counter-strike capacity in response to China’s military actions in the Indo-Pacific region.

The footage showed the JS Izumo, a Japanese helicopter carrier, being retrofitted to carry stealth fighters in order to enhance Japan’s defense capability against potential threats. The video also captured other facilities at the Yokosuka naval base. After conducting an investigation, ministry officials confirmed that the video was likely taken by a flying drone. This revelation has led to concerns about the vulnerability of defense facilities to drone incursions and the need for enhanced anti-drone measures.

Kihara emphasized the seriousness of the situation, noting that drones have the potential to cause significant disruptions to national defense if they are able to infiltrate military installations undetected. He highlighted the need to adapt to the rapid technological advancements in drone technology and the importance of strengthening countermeasures to protect military bases. Japan plans to expedite the deployment of more advanced anti-drone equipment and improve techniques for intercepting drones through jamming.

The incident involving the drone filming of the Japanese aircraft carrier comes in the context of previous security concerns related to drones in Japan. In 2015, a drone carrying traces of radiation was discovered on the roof of the prime minister’s office, raising fears about the potential for drone use in terrorist attacks. While there were no injuries or damage from this incident, it underscored the need for tighter regulations on drone flights in sensitive areas. Restrictions on drone flights have since been implemented over key public and diplomatic locations as well as nuclear facilities.

Overall, the increasing popularity and accessibility of drones for various purposes such as industrial applications, search and rescue operations, and security surveillance have also raised concerns about their potential misuse for malicious activities. The incident involving the drone filming of the Japanese aircraft carrier serves as a reminder of the evolving security threats posed by drones and the need for robust defense measures to mitigate these risks. Japan’s commitment to improving its anti-drone capabilities signals a proactive approach to safeguarding its national security interests in the face of emerging challenges in the modern threat landscape.

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