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The U.S. military’s F-35B fighter jets could use Izumo-class ships for training exercises after the Japanese vessels are renovated to be able to host such aircraft, Defense Minister Takeshi Iwaya said Thursday.

Takeoff and landing drills using the Japanese helicopter carriers, which are due to be remodeled into de facto aircraft carriers, by U.S. F-35Bs may happen before Japan takes delivery of its own F-35Bs, Iwaya told a news conference.

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