Indo-Pacific and Middle East Deployment 2023 (IMED23) unit departed from Funakoshi Base, Yokosuka.

On January 19, JS URAGA and JS AWAJI of Mine Sweeper Division 1, departed Funakoshi base in Yokosuka for the Indo-Pacific and Middle East Deployment Force (IMED23). The commander of Mine Sweeper Division 1 is CAPT NAKAI Eiichi.
Commander in Chief, Self Defense Fleet, JMSDF, ADM SAITO Akira said, "As part of IMED23, Mine Sweeper Division 1 will participate in International Maritime Exercise/ CUTLASS EXPRESS 2023 (IMX/CE23), an exercise conducted by the U.S. Navy starting at the end of February 2023, where JMSDF will strengthen cooperation with participating navies and improve our tactical capabilities. In addition, through this multilateral exercise, our cooperation can contribute to shaping a desirable security environment throughout the Indo-Pacific and Middle East. I hope that each and every one of you will devote your energy to accomplishing the mission. "
The Self-Defense Fleet maintains readiness and contributes to the peace and stability of the Indo-Pacific region, not only for the defense of Japan but also for the realization of a "Free and Open Indo-Pacific" in cooperation with allied and friendly navies.