Japanese-made Parts for F-35 Would Evade Weapons Export Ban

The government would allow the export of Japanese-made parts for the U.S. F-35 stealth fighter as an exception to Japan’s long-standing ban on weapons exports, sources said Monday.

Japan intends to acquire F-35s, but domestic defense contractors have yet to commit to join on its production.

Presuming such contractor participation, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga is expected to endorse parts exports to third countries in a statement soon to be issued, despite concerns that the use of Japanese parts for them might conflict with the nation’s policy of avoiding any possible aggravation of international conflicts.

Such concerns have been fueled as Israel is on the list of countries expected to acquire F-35. Tensions between the Middle Eastern country and its neighbors are perpetually high.

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