Nearly 40,000 people gathered in Tokyo's Meiji Park yesterday (Sunday) to watch Japan's 17th annual military parade.
Prime Minister; Defence Minister and Speaker of the House of Representatives; various units marching past.
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Background: Nearly 40,000 people gathered in Tokyo's Meiji Park yesterday (Sunday) to watch Japan's 17th annual military parade.
There to review units of the ground, maritime and air self-defence forces was Prime Minister Eisaku Sato. He was accompanied by Defence Minister Masuda and Mitsujiro Ishii, Speaker of the House of Representatives.
As well as the 4,400 men and women taking part in the parade there was a strong display of Japan's armoured strength including tanks and guided missiles.
This year Japan began a five year programme costing 2,340,000,000 yen (about GBP2,000,000) to strengthen her armed forces. The manpower of the various services will be increased as will the number of aircraft, tanks and naval vessels.
Although pledged under the constitution to renounce was as a means of settling international disputes, Japan reserves the right to defend herself if attacked.
Under a mutal defence assistance pact signed in 1954 Japan is supplied with almost all its equipment by the United States. This was followed by a treaty of mutual co-operation and security, signed in 1960, which put the two countries on a footing of equality.