Japan Approves Plan For Increased Defense Spending

Drones, fighters, and destroyers among the equipment to be bought


TOKYO (AP) — Japan on Tuesday approved a plan to increase defense spending by 5 percent over the next five years to purchase its first surveillance drones, more jet fighters and naval destroyers in the face of China's military expansion.

The revised 5-year defense plan was adopted by the Cabinet along with a new national security strategy that reflects Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's drive to raise the profile of Japan's military and have the country play a bigger role in international diplomacy and security.

Experts say the strategy and the defense plans are in line with a power shift that has been continuing for several years. But Japan's neighbors — and some Japanese citizens — worry that the new reports push the country away from its pacifist constitution adopted after World War II.