It should be recalled that Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe approved on December 22 the country's defense budget for 2018 in the amount of 5.19 trillion yen ($ 46 billion). The budget is 1.3% higher than defense spending in 2017. The purchase of two "Aegis" anti-missile systems allocated 730 million yen (almost 5.5 million euros).
Also in mid-December 2017, the Minister of Defense of Japan, Tomomi Inada, went on a visit to Guam to personally get acquainted with the American anti-missile defense system THAAD. It is planned that Japan will purchase some of these complexes in order to cover those areas that cannot be covered by the SM-3 missiles and the "Patriot" PAC-3 systems already in service with the Land of the Rising Sun.
According to a statement of Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Maria Zakharova, the deployment of the US missile defense systems in Japan will in fact mean a violation of the Treaty on the Elimination of Medium and Small-Range Missiles (INF). Tokyo’s actions contradict the priority task of building trust between Russia and Japan in the military political sphere, which will adversely affect the overall atmosphere of bilateral relations, including negotiations on the peace treaty issue.
The United States does not consider the planned deployment of Aegis Ashore American missile defense systems in Japan to violate the provisions of the Russian-US Treaty on the Elimination of Intermediate-Range and Shorter-Range Missiles and reject Moscow’s conclusions about non-compliance by Washington with this bilateral agreement.
For years now, Russia and China have been talking about the dangers associated with the deployment of the US missile defense systems, including the land version of Aegis Ashore. The military and political leadership of the United States, however, does not pay special attention to such criticism and continues to build new facilities. Moreover, the SM-3 missile development program continues, new results of which will be implemented not only on ships, but also on land complexes.
Thus, in the existing configuration, the US missile defense facilities threaten the interests of Russia. The use of SM-3 family missile defense systems can change the strategic balance in a region with negative consequences for the international situation. Officially rejected, but maintained at a theoretical level, the possibility of firing land-to-ground cruise missiles, in turn, turns out to be a direct threat to the security of neighboring countries.