• Kyodo

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An advance team of the Ground Self-Defense Force entered Iraq from Kuwait on Monday afternoon to prepare for aid activities in the city of Samawah, a Dutch military official said.

It is the first time since World War II that Japanese troops have set foot in a country in which hostilities are ongoing. The team, headed by Col. Masahisa Sato, left the U.S. Army’s Camp Virginia in western Kuwait at 9:50 a.m., according to Dutch and U.S. military officials.

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