China warns Japan against making modifications to helicopter carriers

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The Chinese government has issued a warning to Tokyo against any plans by the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force to transform its helicopter carriers into aircraft carriers.

Chinese diplomats were reacting to report Japan planned to modify the Izumo helicopter carrier for fighter jets, according to Xinhua.

China’s foreign ministry issued a warning to Japan to “act prudently” following the report.

Beijing diplomatic spokeswoman Hua Chunying said Tuesday at a regular press briefing that Tokyo should realize peace “through action” instead.

“We urge Japan to do more that may help enhance mutual trust and promote regional peace and stability,” Hua said.

On Monday Japanese media reported that Tokyo was considering the purchase of U.S.-made F-35B stealth fighter jets for use on the Izumo-class warships. The planes are capable of vertical take-off and landing (VTOL).

The Japanese military believes the aircraft will be useful in deterring Chinese aggression in the region.

Hua said modification of the ships would violate Japan’s pacifist constitution, which says Tokyo cannot possess “attack aircraft carriers.” [source]

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