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  4. 2019.9.6

57% oppose sending SDF to Mideast amid tensions with Iran自衛隊中東派遣57%反対、共同世論調査

A U.S. Marine aboard the amphibious transport dock ship USS John P. Murtha looks at nearby vessels as the John P. Murtha transits the Strait of Hormuz, off Oman, in this undated handout picture released by the U.S. Navy on Aug. 12.© ADAM DUBLINSKE/U.S. NAVY/HANDOUT via REUTERS
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Over half of voters oppose dispatching Japan’s Self-Defense Forces to the Middle East for a U.S.-led coalition to protect shipping in the Strait of Hormuz amid heightened tensions with Iran, a Kyodo News survey found Aug. 18.

In the nationwide telephone poll conducted Aug. 17 and 18, 57.1% said Japan should not send the SDF to the region, while only 28.2% said it should.

The U.S. has urged Japan to join the coalition but Tokyo is cautious about sending the Maritime Self-Defense Force to the strait as it could undermine its ties with Iran.

The Japanese government is considering sending MSDF destroyers and surveillance planes to the Bab el-Mandeb Strait between Yemen and the Horn of Africa rather than participating in the U.S. effort, with SDF activities overseas restricted under the war-renouncing Constitution, government sources said in early August.

The survey also showed that approval for the Cabinet of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe rose to 50.3%, up 1.7 percentage points from the previous poll conducted after the July 21 Upper House election. Abe’s ruling camp scored a solid win in the election, but the group of lawmakers who want to amend the pacifist Constitution lost the two-thirds majority required to start the process. (Kyodo)

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