Japan prepares troops for Rwanda
Wednesday 14 September 1994
Japan's foreign policy, which has been regarded for years as timid and largely under American guidance, has recently become the subject of domestic debate. The argument that Japan must play a greater role in world affairs is gradually attracting more support. The main issue is whether Tokyo should aspire to a permanent seat on the Security Council, which would require frequent and rapid decision-making on matters of war and peace. Until now Japan has shunned involvement in international conflicts because of its anti- war constitution.
Mr Boutros-Ghali has said he supports Japanese permanent membership of the Security Council, and in a press conference yesterday he tried to play down the fears of the Japanese of being dragged into international conflicts against their will. 'There is no relationship between the membership in the Security Council and the necessity to participate in peacekeeping operations,' he said. The indecision and lack of consensus inside Japan was illustrated yesterday by a dispute over what weapons should go with the 470 troops, who will be in Zaire helping to provide sanitation and medical assistance to Rwandan refugees and co-ordinating airlifts. The defence agency said the troops would need weapons for their personal safety - pistols, rifles and at least two machineguns.
The pacifist Socialist Party, the governing coalition's second largest party, objected. Eventually a compromise was agreed under which one machinegun would be sent, and one pistol or rifle for every two military personnel.
- 1 Planes go hybrid-electric in important step to greener flight
- 4 Hip hop is both racial and political, and for Iggy Azalea to suggest otherwise is insulting
- 5 Man hospitalised with pneumonia after downing eggnog at office Christmas party
Antonio Martin shooting: Black teenager may have tried to ambush patrolman, says police officer's lawyer
Orphan kangaroos spend Christmas without their parents
Northern Lights above Britain: Stunning Aurora Borealis illuminates Northumberland sky on Christmas Eve
New route to Mars could make manned mission much cheaper and easier
Isis 'did not shoot down Jordan war plane' before capturing pilot, says US
British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
Rozanne Duncan: Ukip expels councillor for 'jaw-dropping' comments made in BBC TV interview
Germany anti-Islam protests: 17,000 march on Dresden against 'Islamification of the West'
Ukip member gets into Christmas spirit with Union Flag plea to Santa 'for our country back'
BBC director Danny Cohen: Rising UK antisemitism makes me feel more uncomfortable than ever
Alex Salmond has 'broken his word to the Scottish people' says Scottish Lib Dem leader
£20000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This full service social media ...
£24000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: We are 'Changemakers in retail'...
Very Competitive: Austen Lloyd: Senior Conveyancer - South West We are see...
Excellent Salary: Austen Lloyd: DORSET MARKET TOWN - SENIOR PROPERTY SOLICITOR...