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The Defense Agency announced Tuesday that it plans to narrow the geographical areas where the Maritime Self-Defense Force is providing logistic support to U.S.-led forces fighting al-Qaeda militants in Afghanistan, in view of the outbreak of war in Iraq.

The agency did not reveal the exact areas where the logistic support would be pulled back, but observers said the move could be seen as an effective pledge by Tokyo to not have the Self-Defense Forces participate in the war on Iraq, even indirectly.

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