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Defense Minister Taro Kono on Friday explained via telephone to his Australian counterpart, Linda Reynolds, Japan’s possible dispatch of Maritime Self-Defense Force ships to the Middle East for securing sea lane safety.

Australia has pledged to send patrol planes and vessels to join a U.S.-led coalition for safeguarding Middle East seaways.

“We talked about sharing information between the two countries’ troops,” Kono told reporters after the talks.

On Thursday, Kono had a series of telephone talks with the defense chiefs of Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates, which have also pledged to join the U.S.-led coalition. Kono told the officials that Japan plans to provide them with information when deploying Self-Defense Forces.

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