US OKs selling Japan missiles to shoot down North Korean missiles

US OKs selling Japan missiles to shoot down North Korean missiles

North Korea has twice flown two ballistic missile tests over Japanese territory and landed its last ICBM test on November 28 in the Sea of Japan within 200 nautical miles of the Japanese coast.

The announcement comes amid the much anticipated high-level talks between the Koreas on Tuesday.

The deal, announced on Tuesday, is set to provide the government of Japan with four Standard Missile-3 Block IIA missiles, along with four Mk 29 missile canisters, if approved by the U.S. Congress, which has been notified of the potential sale.

North Korea continued its nuclear advances despite condemnation from the worldwide community.

President Donald Trump's administration has approved the sale of four missiles to Japan to bolster the country's defense system against the threat from North Korea.

North Korea ramped up its missile activity in the vicinity of Japan previous year, firing ballistic missiles that repeatedly landed in the Sea of Japan, raising concerns in Tokyo.

Amid escalating tensions between North Korea, its neighbors and the USA, this week saw a series of breakthroughs, with Pyongyang agreeing to reopen the diplomatic hotline, send a high-ranking delegation of athletes and officials to the upcoming Winter Olympics and hold military talks to reduce hostility between the nations. "Japan is no longer needed to exist near us".

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The government plans to introduce a new missile intercept system on two new Aegis-equipped destroyers that will be deployed in fiscal 2019 and 2020, The Yomiuri Shimbun has learned.

The system will commence operation in 2019-2020.

The Japanese government is leaning toward the inclusion of the Integrated Air and Missile Defense (IAMD), the envisaged missile defense system laid out by the USA military, in the National Defense Program Guidelines, which is expected to be revised this year.

HAWAII-In a comment likely to spark controversy over the nation's defense policy, Defense Minister Itsunori Onodera on January 10 said Japan should build a comprehensive system capable of intercepting cruise missiles.

Washington, however, brushed off Moscow's criticism, saying that it in "full compliance" with the agreement while, in turn, accusing Russian Federation of breaching it.

The IAMD is targeted at not only ballistic missiles but also cruise missiles and other aerial threats.