The air, maritime and ground units of the Self-Defense Forces will join in a tripartite exercise next month for the first time in SDF history, Defense Agency officials said Thursday.The exercise will take place Nov. 15 in and around Iojima, an uninhabited island some 1,500 km south of Tokyo, they said. During the drill, to include about 2,300 SDF members, GSDF corps will conduct landing practice using MSDF amphibious ships and ASDF aircraft. It will be the first ever joint exercise to be held solely by Japan’s three forces, agency officials said.Meanwhile, the Japanese forces will join hands with their U.S. counterparts as well as the U.S. Marine Corps to carry out the fifth annual field training exercise between the two nations from Nov. 2 to 13, the officials said.Some 9,400 Japanese and 10,000 U.S. military personnel will participate in the joint exercise, which will be held at SDF training fields in Hokkaido, Tohoku and southern Kyushu.

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