Japan launched a satellite on Tuesday to enhance the capacity of its defense forces. The defense forces are trying to protect a chain of islands in the southern edge of the East China Sea. The launch took place as conflict in the South China Sea escalates.
South China Sea Dispute: Japan Launches Military Satellite
The satellite was launched from Japan’s Tanegashima space port and was carried by an H-IIA rocket. A spokesman for Mitsubishi Heavy Industries stated that the satellite had successfully entered orbit. Mitsubishi Heavy Industries built the launcher.
This satellite is one of planned so-called three X-band satellites. The satellite was launched to improve broadband capacity. In addition, it will merge a broken and overburdened communications network and permit communications across greater territory. The launch that took place on Tuesday marked the victorious continuation of a program that was paused last year after an embarrassing mishap.
According to Reuters, Japan acts as the chief U.S. ally in Asia. The country is worried that the current increase in Chinese military movements in the area is not a good sign. In reality, China is trying to extend its military presence in South China Sea to challenge United States’ maritime dominance.
Moreover, Japan and China are in a long territorial conflict in the East China Sea. Both countries are claiming a group of unoccupied islands known as the Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China. Japan and China are also in conflict over the misuse of gas fields in exclusive economic zones claimed by both nations.
South China Sea: China And U.S. Conflict Escalates
Daily Disruption previously reported that the conflict over the waterway was escalating, while the White House commented on protecting international territory. China stated that it had irrefutable sovereignty over the conflicted waterway. However, U.S. vowed to stop China from having complete access to the territory.
Trump’s Secretary of State nominee Rex Tillerson recently stated that China must not be allowed to have access to islands it has made in the disputed sea. In response, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying, stressed that the U.S. is not a party to the dispute. She added that the U.S. should not make statement that could create tension in the area.
Liked this story? Follow us on Facebook for more updates on Asia.