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`` Constitutional Revision Needed for SDF Status``

Posted October. 14, 2001 08:46,   


Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi, who is promoting to legislate a special law in order to support for the U.S.`s war against terrorism, revealed the opinion that the revision of constitution is needed for acknowledging Self-Defense Forces (SDF) as military forces, on 12th.

Prime Minister Koizumi insisted, Friday night in a TV news program of TBS, ``It is not proper to dispatch SDF in the situation where SDF is not clear if it is constitutional or not. The article 9 of the constitution should be revised in order to clearly define SDF as military forces.``

Koizumi said in a Diet session on 12th, ``In reality, SDF has war potential.`` By saying this, he reversed the Japanese government`s official position on SDF that SDF is not a war potential.

Japanese government has been keeping the position that ``SDF is the minimum strength for self-defense and not a war potential.`` to legitimize SDF in accordance with the article 9 of the constitution, which prohibits the existence of SDF and any holdings of war potential.

Koizumi said, on the operation range of SDF that will support the U.S. and British antiterrorist war, ``The American definition of `combat zone` and that of Japanese, which will be defined by the `antiterrorist special law`, are different.`` It implies that the government can dispatch SDF to American combat zone if Japanese government decides it as non-combat zone.

Shim Kyu-Sun ksshim@donga.com