Japan to buy U.S. F-35 fighter jets

Japan to buy U.S. F-35 fighter jets

Japan plans to buy 105 U.S.-made stealth warplanes, U.S. President Donald Trump said during his state visit to Japan.

"The United States supports Japan's efforts to improve its defence capabilities, and in recent months we have sent them a large amount of military equipment," Trump said at a press conference, announcing Japan's intention to buy 105 new F-35 warplanes.

On 29 March the Japan Air Self-Defence Forces (JASDF) announced that the first F-35A shipment, which makes up part of the service's 302nd Tactical Fighter Squadron, has achieved Initial Operational Capability (IOC) status, allowing the fighter jets to take part in simple missions, Sputnik recalls.

The Japanese government first placed an order for 42 F-35As in December 2011. Still, by the time December 2018 rolled around, the existing order was updated. At the time it was reported that Tokyo would be adding 63 F-35As and 42 F-35B variants to its order, in addition to the already placed request for 42 F-35As.

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