Japan's SDF forces to be sent to Haiti to help peacekeeping operations

10:39, February 06, 2010      

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The cabinet of the government of the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) on Friday approved of a plan to send the nation's Self Defense Forces (SDF) to Haiti to help with peacekeeping operations in the quake-hit country.

Some 160 SDF members are set to leave Japan on Saturday to assist in U.N. efforts in the Caribbean nation, Kyodo News reported.

After a cabinet meeting, Defense Minister Toshimi Kitazawa ordered the dispatch of the forces through Nov. 30 to assist in engineering work in the country, which was devastated by a huge earthquake last month.

He urged the SDF to "make the most of their technical strength and abundant experience to contribute to the (well being) of the Haitian people."

Kitazawa added that the situation on the ground is now basically stable, and that the main task for the SDF would be helping to rebuild the infrastructure of the region while helping increase the standard of living for those affected by the quake.

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