Japan and the U.S. to reaffirm CBRN working group

Japan and the United States will agree at upcoming security talks to reaffirm the role of a bilateral joint working group to counter the threat of chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear weapons.

The renewal appears to be a response to the need for the Japanese Self-Defense Forces and the U.S. Armed Forces stationed in Japan to cooperate in the event of a nuclear accident. Past agreements have focused predominantly on the threat of weapons of mass destruction from North Korea, according to Breitbart.com.

To create a better working relationship in the event of emergencies, the Japanese government also hopes to have the U.S. military take part in local government-sponsored disaster drills and general disaster management planning.

The agreement is expected to be included in a joint statement issued after the meeting, to be held next week in Washington. The exact schedule remains uncertain, however, because an ongoing Diet session may prevent Japanese ministers from leaving the country.

An outline of the statement has revealed that the U.S. military’s role in relief efforts under Operation Tomodachi, named after the Japanese word for friend, will be noted in the agreement, as will the importance of cooperation between the U.S. military, the SDF and Japanese local governments, according to Breitbart.com.

A new set of strategic goals will also be issued in the statement, including the hope that China will take responsible action in response to global issues.