Japan Proposes 161 New Important Security Areas

Tokyo, May 12 (Jiji Press)—The Japanese government proposed Friday that 161 additional locations in 10 prefectures including Tokyo be designated as areas deemed important under law in terms of national security.

They include areas around Niigata Airport in the city of Niigata, which is also used by military aircraft, and Kyushu Electric Power Co.’s Sendai nuclear power plant in Kagoshima Prefecture, as well as remote border islands and areas surrounding Self-Defense Force bases.

The designations will be confirmed as early as August, after hearings with municipalities involved. In designated areas, the government can check how real estate is used and crack down on sabotages against facilities.

The Senkaku Islands in Okinawa Prefecture, also claimed by China, will not be designated because they are owned and administered by the government.

In its first move under the law to regulate the use of real estate surrounding key security facilities and remote territorial islands, the government designated 58 locations last December and began implementation in February.

It hopes to pick 600 more sites, including areas around U.S. military bases, by March next year.