Dispatch of a SDF officer as an instructor to the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Center (KAIPTC) in Ghana

The Government of Japan dispatched Colonel Katsunobu Ishibashi, Director of Japan Peacekeeping Training and Research Center, Joint Staff College, as an instructor from November 15 to 20, 2011 to the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Center (KAIPTC) in Ghana.

Japan has dispatched instructors a total of six times to African peacekeeping training centers in Egypt, Mali and Ghana on an ongoing basis starting in 2008. Japan aims to share its experience accumulated through peacekeeping operations (PKO) with African countries that are working to resolve regional problems on their own, and eventually to contribute to the improvement of security environment in each region. The lectures focus on case studies of PKO the SDF participated in and the importance of constructing relationships with local citizens. These courses support self-help efforts, including the activities carried out by trainees, which will encourage them to disseminate the lecture content.

Dispatch of the International Peace Cooperation Unit to the Republic of South Sudan ( the staff officers of the 1st detachment )

(from left) Captain Shinji Nakamura and Takuhiko Hosokawa
(from left) Captain Shinji Nakamura and Takuhiko Hosokawa
The staff officers of the 1st detachment being sent off with a warm applause
The staff officers of the 1st detachment being sent off with a warm applause

The United Nations expressed its anticipation for cooperation from Japan for the United Nations Mission in the Republic of South Sudan (UNMISS), and in response, on November 28 of last year, Japan dispatched to UNMISS two officials of GSDF personnel as staff of the UNMISS headquarters.

After departing Japan, the members of the International Peace Cooperation Corps to the Republic of South Sudan, Major Kenji Nakamura and Captain Takuhiko Hosokawa, received implementation training in Uganda before proceeding to South Sudan. They are currently filling two posts: one is Logistics Staff Officer that is in charge of coordinating within UNMISS on overall military logistics demands, and the other is Database Staff Officer involved in the management of databases.

Issuance of SDF deployment orders for the dispatch of the International Peace Cooperation Unit to the Republic of South Sudan

In a Cabinet meeting held on December 20 of last year, the Japanese Government decided to send a 330 strength GSDF engineer unit, and a maximum of 40 GSDF personnel (Joint Coordination Center) to coordinate with the United Nations and other local government organizations in order to assist the engineer unit.

In response to this Cabinet decision, the Minister of Defense issued orders for the dispatch of the SDF engineers and other personnel. Personnel of the GSDF Central Readiness Force and ASDF Air Support Command were formed into units as outlined below, and are to carry out activities in accordance with the implementation plan and procedures.

  1. Engineer unit dispatched to South Sudan to carry out infrastructure development including maintenance and repair of roads, etc. (1st Unit; approximately 210 personnel)
  2. Joint Coordination Center to assist the activities of the engineer unit mentioned in 1. (approximately 30 personnel)
  3. Air transport unit to transport personnel and equipments, etc. (approximately 170 personnel)

The engineer and other units are consecutively departing Japan from January 11 and will commence activities in and around Juba, the capital of South Sudan. SDF personnel will provide assistance for the peace and development of the newly independent Republic of South Sudan.

Ceremony for the Presentation of the Unit Flag to the International Peace Cooperation Corps to South Sudan

1. Personnel receiving a warm applause 2. Colonel Namatame receiving the unit flag from then Defense Minister Ichikawa 3. Lieutenant Colonel Sakama receiving the unit flag from then Defense Minister Ichikawa
1. Personnel receiving a warm applause   2. Colonel Namatame receiving the unit flag from then Defense Minister Ichikawa
3. Lieutenant Colonel Sakama receiving the unit flag from then Defense Minister Ichikawa

On January 7, a ceremony was held at the Ministry of Defense to present unit flags to the unit that was to be dispatched to South Sudan to participate in the United Nations peacekeeping operations (PKO), UNMISS.

Before the Senior Vice-Minister of Defense Watanabe, and the Prime Minister Noda, as well as two hundred family members of the personnel, 30 guests from the Diet and government organization the former Defense Minister Ichikawa presented unit flags to Colonel Toru Namatame, the head of Joint Coordination Office, and Lieutenant Colonel Teruo Sakama, the head of the Engineering Unit. Prime Minister Noda encouraged the unit personnel by saying, “I hope that you will accomplish your mission by living up to the expectations of the international community so it can be an expression of our gratitude for assistance in the wake of the Great East Japan Earthquake.”

Anti-piracy operations off the Coast of Somalia and in the Gulf of Aden

Overview of P-3C patrol aircraft operations over the coast of Somalia and in the Gulf of Aden

Operational Activity from November to December 2011

  1. Number of flights: 36 (Accumulated total of 599)
  2. Flight hours: Approximately 280 (Accumulated total of approximately 4,640 hours)
  3. Number of visually confirmed commercial ships: Approximately 3,230 (Accumulated total of approximately 45,770)
  4. Number of times information was provided to Japanese destroyers, foreign warships, and/or commercial ships: Approximately 360 (Accumulated total of approximately 5,460 times)

[Examples of information provision]

On November 12, a P-3C conducting surveillance flights discovered a suspicious looking skiff (with a long ladder aboard). The P-3C notified a nearby vessel from Denmark and provided the information to other vessels also in the area. The vessel from Denmark dispatched a helicopter to respond to the situation and the P-3C resumed its warning and surveillance mission.

On December 5, a P-3C conducting surveillance flights discovered a suspicious looking skiff (one ladder, many polyethylene tanks, and two outboard engines). The P-3C notified a nearby U.S. vessel and provided the information to other vessels also in the area. The U.S. vessel dispatched a boat to respond to the situation and the P-3C resumed its warning and surveillance mission.

Overview of surface unit escort operations off the coast of Somalia and in the Gulf of Aden

Operational Activity from November to December 2011

  1. Number of escort operations: 19 (The 297th to 315th escort operations) (The 256th to 274th escort operations under Japan’s Anti-Piracy Measures Law)
  2. Number of escorted vessels: 125 (Accumulated total of 2,276 since the commencement of escort operations)

[Breakdown]

Japanese-registered ships: 1 (Accumulated total of 14) Foreign ships operated by Japanese shipping companies: 14 (Accumulated total of 477)
(Out of the 14 foreign ships, Japanese citizens were on board 1 ship)

Foreign ships other than the above: 110 (Accumulated total of 1,785) (Out of 110 foreign ships, Japanese citizens were on board 0 ship)

  1. *The above record does not include the 1st-41st escort operation performed as Maritime Security Activities, which were performed before the establishment of the Anti-Piracy Measures Law.
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