Japan Ministry of Defense


 
A GSDF UH-1 helicopter flying over the flood-stricken area
No.19 NOVEMBER 2010

A GSDF UH-1 helicopter flying over the flood-stricken area

Border Road Repairs in Haiti completed

Colonel Fukunaga cutting the ribbon at the completion ceremony for the border road repairs
Colonel Fukunaga cutting the ribbon at the completion ceremony for the border road repairs

On May 29, the second unit of International Relief Team to Haiti (approximately 350 personnel) commissioning in the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH), U.N. PKO, for reconstruction support for the major earthquake in Haiti, completed emergency repair of the road leading into the neighboring Dominican Republic, and held a completion ceremony inviting relevant local people.

At the completion ceremony, Colonel Masashi Fukunaga, the commander of the 2nd unit and other relevant persons made a ribbon cutting to celebrate the completion of repair and opening of the road. Commander Fukunaga said, “We have completed repairs on this road, which is a vital artery for transporting everyday goods. Hereafter we would like to do our best efforts for reconstruction of Haiti in cooperation with local people.”

The repair work of the road began on March 29 and lasted for about two months. A total of 1,700 members engaged in repair works including levee protection work, raising embankments, and raising its base along Lake Ethan in preparation for the rainy season.

From May 26, the second unit began new missions of dismantling the collapsed prison and removing the rubble, then removing rubble from inner-city roads in the city from May 31, and dismantling the collapsed tax office building and removing the rubble in Port-au-Prince from June 3.

From June 8, the GSDF International Relief Team and the engineering unit of the Republic of Korea (ROK) took charge of the same area in Carrefour region which is at the halfway point between Port-au-Prince and Leogane. Japan and ROK units worked together on dismantling the collapsed school building.

The national flags of Japan and ROK were painted on the GSDF’s trucks appealing that Japan and ROK cooperated on the reconstruction assistance activities.

The jointly carried out dismantling of the school building was completed on July 1. On July 7, the Japan and ROK units and persons of the school held a completion ceremony at the leveled school
Colonel Fukunaga shaking hands with Commander of the ROK engineering unit at the work site
Colonel Fukunaga shaking hands with Commander of the ROK engineering unit at the work site
site, and the children expressed their gratitude through singing songs.

In August, the second contingent began being replaced with the third unit (approximately 330 members). The 3rd contingent commanded by Colonel Toshiya Sasaki headed from Japan to Haiti on August 17. Accompanying this replacement of unit, the KC-767 aerial refueling and transport aircraft, Air Self-Defense Force (ASDF) made a round trip flight from ASDF Komaki Base, central part of Japan, to Haiti, this was the first actual mission overseas to transport the equipment.

International Disaster Relief Activities for the Flood Damage in Pakistan

Members of the dispatch team carrying out on-site transport activities
Members of the dispatch team carrying out on-site transport activities

On August 20, based on the International Disaster Relief Law, Defense Minister Kitazawa issued the order to the Ground, Maritime, and Air Self-Defense Force (GSDF, MSDF, ASDF) to conduct relief activities for the floods that occurred in the northwestern part of Pakistan in late July, which deploys about 500 personnel.

Approximately 1,600 people (as of August 31) died and more than 20 millions of people were suffered from flooding. Relief activities were sluggish due to the severing of roads and the collapse of bridges, and the situation deteriorated. Then, H.E. Ban Ki-moon, Secretary-General of the United Nations visited Pakistan to observe, and announced assistance of about US$27 million, and followingly requested emergency assistance of about US$460 million to the member countries.

After receiving a request for assistance from the Government of Pakistan on August 9 (local time),the Government of Japan dispatched the assesment team comprised of officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Defense from August 13 and examined the situation of the area. On August 19, Defense Minister Kitazawa issued instructions to prepare for the dispatch of SDF personnel, and each service of the SDF proceeded with the necessary preparations. Then on August 20 the Defense Minister issued an operation order for International Disaster Relief Mission.

The dispatched units included the International Disaster Relief Air Support Unit in Pakistan (approximately 200 members), GSDF, the International Disaster Relief Maritime Transport Unit in Pakistan (approximately 160 members),MSDF, and the First, Second and Third International Disaster Relief Air Transport Unit in Pakistan (approximately 150 members), ASDF. The units would arrive at the army airbase in Multan in the central Pakistan that would be as the base for relief activities. And three UH-1 multipurpose helicopters were transported to Pakistan by ASDF C-130 transport aircraft. The first of three CH-47JA transport helicopters was transported there by commercial large-size cargo plane and the others were transported there by the MSDF transport vessel “Shimokita”. The 6 helicopters would be used for transportation of relief supplies, personnel and so on in the affected areas.

On August 31 two UH-1 multipurpose helicopters began its mission for transporting materials, personnel and medical supplies and so on between the Multan army airbase and a material depot located over 100 km away from Multan in the southwest.