In the first month after the Jan. 1 earthquake that mainly struck the Noto Peninsula in central Japan, the Self-Defense Forces dispatched a total of more than 170,000 troops to affected areas to reconstruct roads, transport goods and support the residents.

SDF personnel rescued about 1,000 people and provided a bathing service to over 120,000 people, according to the Defense Ministry.

"We faced challenges, but were able to meet the needs (of affected people) in our activities," a senior SDF official said.