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Japan may send personnel to Afghanistan

June 1, 2008 at 12:57 PM

TOKYO, June 1 (UPI) -- Japanese Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda said Sunday he is considering sending personnel to Afghanistan for "land-based activities."

''We could be involved in land-based activities in Afghanistan if the conditions there enable us to deploy. I'm always considering such a possibility," Fukuda said.

The prime minister's remarks followed comments by Chief Cabinet Secretary Nobutaka Machimura suggesting that Tokyo may consider assisting Afghanistan, Kyodo News Agency reported.

''The government is trying to think about such activities from a broad perspective, including whether the activities could be based at sea or on the ground in Afghanistan,'' Machimura said Saturday.

Under it's post-World War II constitution, Japan is limited in the use of its military outside its borders. However, it has sent troops to Iraq in a non-combat supportive role.

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