August 22, 2019
Tokyo--The U.S. military's F-35B fighter jets could use Izumo-class destroyers for exercises after the Japanese vessels are renovated into de facto aircraft carriers, Japanese Defense Minister Takeshi Iwaya said Thursday.
Takeoff and landing drills using the Japanese vessels by U.S. F-35Bs are possible before Japan takes delivery of its own F-35Bs, Iwaya told a press conference.
U.S. support may be necessary to test the Japanese vessels, he said.
Japan plans to renovate the Izumo, one of the two Izumo-class destroyers, in fiscal 2020, which starts next April, and the Kaga, the other, in fiscal 2022.
The country is unlikely to take delivery of F-35Bs until at least fiscal 2024. Jiji Press
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