31 July 2017

News Story: Special inspection report finds legal violation in GSDF activity logs scandal

The Defense Ministry violated the freedom of information law by not disclosing the daily activity logs of Ground Self-Defense Force (GSDF) troops participating in U.N. peacekeeping operations in South Sudan, a report by the ministry's special inspection office has shown.

In a report it released on July 28, the Inspector General's Office of Legal Compliance of the Defense Ministry, which investigated the scandal, confirmed that there was a violation of the Act on Access to Information Held by Administrative Organs by not disclosing the daily activity logs while they existed in the GSDF.

The report stated that even after the logs were found within the GSDF following the nondisclosure decision, Administrative Vice Minister of Defense Tetsuro Kuroe and others decided not to disclose the data, underscoring the tendency within the Defense Ministry and the Self-Defense Forces for a systematic cover-up.

The first request to disclose the daily activity logs was filed in July last year, when the consistencies between Japan's five principles for participating in U.N. peacekeeping operations, such as an agreement on a cease-fire, and a major armed clash near the South Sudan capital of Juba, where the GSDF unit was operating, were being called into question.

Read the full story at The Mainichi