Kyoto Gov. Keiji Yamada on Thursday officially endorsed the installation of an advanced U.S. military radar in the prefecture, which will be the first U.S. military facility in the Kinki region centering on Osaka.
The so-called X-band radar to be set up on the Japanese Air Self-Defense Force's Kyogamisaki sub-base in the city of Kyotango, located on the Sea of Japan coast, is seen as important to defend against the North Korean missile threat.
Yamada told a prefectural assembly session the same day that he is ready to cooperate with the central government, citing the state's promise to ensure safety and implement measures to counter electromagnetic waves and noise.
He also said he would withdraw his cooperation if the central government fails to honor its promise.
According to the prefectural government, up to 160 U.S. service members and technicians will be assigned to the new radar facility.
Similar X-band radar has already been set up on the ASDF's Shariki sub-base in the city of Tsugaru in Aomori Prefecture, northern Japan.
X-band radar is capable of precisely tracking the trajectory of a ballistic missile and allows U.S. forces to launch interceptor missiles from the ground and sea once a ballistic missile has been detected.
Asked by the central government in February to accept the installation of the facility on the ASDF base, the local government requested that local residents' safety concerns be addressed.