30 Aug '13, 11am

Japanese Defense Ministry Seeks 3% Budget Hike via @defense_news

TOKYO — Japan’s defense ministry is looking for its biggest budget hike in two decades, partly to create a Marines-like force, it revealed Friday, as neighbors fret about Tokyo’s rising assertiveness. Military bosses want more than 4.8 trillion yen (US $49 billion) — three percent up on last year — with much of their focus on safeguarding remote islands as a sovereignty row with China refuses to fade. The move mirrors Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s policy of a more assertive diplomacy and a more active military. Tokyo and Beijing have repeatedly butted heads over the ownership of the Tokyo-controlled islands called the Senkakus, which Beijing claims as the Diaoyus, with official Chinese ships and aircraft regularly testing Japanese forces. Abe has long voiced worries over defense at a time when China is increasing its naval activities in waters around Japan, and as unpredicta...

Full article: http://www.defensenews.com/article/20130830/DEFREG03/3083...

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