The Japan Coast Guard will request a budget of ¥50.4 billion for fiscal 2015, twice its current budget, to enable enhanced security of territorial waters around the Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea, coast guard sources said Tuesday.
The Coast Guard plans to acquire three more jet aircraft and four small high-performance patrol vessels, increase the number of personnel assigned to 10 large patrol ships, and enhance its facilities at Ishigaki port in Okinawa, near the Senkakus.
As Chinese government vessels have repeatedly intruded into Japanese territorial waters near the Senkaku Islands, the Japan Coast Guard plans to set up during fiscal 2015 starting next April a specialized team to guard those territorial waters.
It is also accelerating efforts to create an around-the-clock air patrol system and to enhance maritime policing of the area around the Senkakus.
The Japanese-controlled Senkaku Islands are claimed by China and Taiwan, which respectively call them Diaoyu and Tiaoyutai.
The Japan Coast Guard plans to utilize the jet aircraft not only to guard the territorial waters but also for rescue operations at sea.
The Coast Guard currently has four jet aircraft and 23 propeller-driven planes.
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