• Kyodo

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The commander of the U.S. Pacific Fleet expressed confidence Monday in dealing with North Korea’s missiles, especially given the increasing cooperation and interoperability with the Maritime Self-Defense Force.

Adm. Gary Roughead, speaking at a Foreign Press Center news conference, stressed that the July 5 missile tests and any subsequent tests are “disruptive, provocative and I believe unhelpful to the peace and stability in the region.”

“I’m very comfortable and confident with the capability that we have,” Roughead said when asked whether the Pacific Fleet has the capability to detect and intercept North Korean missiles.

Roughead cited the recent deployment to Japan of “our most capable ballistic missile defense ship,” the USS Shiloh, and “very, very good” cooperation with the MSDF in information-sharing and missile defense operations.

“As you know, we both have Aegis ships, which are very, very capable air defense and missile defense systems,” Roughead said, noting Japan and the United States are also promoting a “very close cooperative developmental program” on an advanced system to intercept ballistic missiles.

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