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Japan to finally confront pirates

JAPAN has finally entered the fray against Somalian pirates as two of its destroyers left for the Gulf of Aden on Saturday.The decision to send a representative force had been considered for months while the administration wrestled with conflicts over the its pacifist constitution. Japan first indicated it would join the joint task force as early as October 2008 but met with inter-parliamentary dissent. But the pressure to contribute to the effort increased with China’s joining the task force in December. “Piracy is a threat to the international community, including Japan, and it is an issue that should be dealt with immediately,” defence minister Yasukazu Hamada told Reuters on Friday “It is the government's important responsibility to protect the lives and property of the Japanese in these waters, which are an essential marine traffic area for our country.”

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