Tokyo – Japan has rejoined the US-led war in Afghanistan. Japan’s navy will resume refueling United States vessels in the Indian Ocean next month. The mission was halted two months ago after the opposition refused to extend the mandate. Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda’s government has now used its majority in the lower house to overrule the opposition-controlled upper house. It was the first time this procedure was used in more than fifty years.
Mr Fukuda said the move was vital for Japan’s international standing. The opposition argues the mission breaches the country’s pacifist constitution and lacks a UN mandate. Over the past few months, the US and its coalition partners have repeatedly asked the Japanese government to resume the mission.