18 July 2017

News Report: Japan Plans to Equip Multirole Fighters With Hypersonic Anti-Ship Missiles

The Japanese government plans to equip the F-2 multirole fighters of the Japan Air Self-Defense Force (JASDF) with a new, domestically produced hypersonic anti-ship missiles starting from 2018 amid the tensions with China over the disputed Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea, local media reported Monday.

TOKYO (Sputnik) — On June 24, a total of four vessels of the Chinese Coast Guard entered Japan's territorial waters near the Senkaku Islands, and stayed there for two hours regardless of the Japanese maritime security service’s calls to leave the area. The Japanese Foreign Ministry expressed a protest to China over the incident.

Japan’s newly developed hypersonic anti-ship missiles would be able to fly three times faster than the speed of sound and would replace previous transonic missiles, the Yomiuri newspaper reported.

The Senkaku Islands or Diaoyudao Islands are at the center of a heated dispute between Japan and China. The United States handed control over the chain of eight islets to Japan in 1972, but Beijing argues they were marked as Chinese territory on maps dating back to 1783.

This story first appeared on Sputnik & is reposted here with permission.