First Osprey transport plane arrives in Chiba
NHK -- Jul 11
An Osprey transport aircraft has arrived at Camp Kisarazu in Chiba Prefecture, near Tokyo, for temporary deployment by the Ground Self-Defense Force, or GSDF.

The Osprey is one of two that have undergone maintenance at US Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni in Japan's western prefecture of Yamaguchi since its arrival in May.

The craft landed at the camp shortly after 4 p.m. on Friday, after a four-day delay due to bad weather.

The GSDF says it will conduct detailed checks of the Ospreys' fuselages over about a month before conducting ground tests on their engines.

The Defense Ministry says the GSDF will start flights of the craft as early as August, but that it may start with basic, on-base training and expand the flight area in phases, taking into account strong local concerns about the aircraft's safety.

The ministry hopes to end the provisional deployment within five years and station a total of 17 Ospreys at an airport in Saga, southwestern Japan, as originally planned.

It is not known when the ministry will be able to deploy the aircraft in Saga. Negotiations with landowners are needed, and a timeframe for facility construction has yet to be set.

People living in a densely populated residential area near another GSDF camp where the Ospreys are expected to fly to have expressed concerns.

陸上自衛隊の新型輸送機「オスプレイ」が初めて配備されました。  オスプレイは山口県にあるアメリカ軍岩国基地での定期整備を終え、7日に配備されました。防衛省はオスプレイを南西諸島の防衛強化が目的で佐賀空港に配備する計画でしたが、地元の反発が強まって難航しているため、木更津駐屯地で5年以内の暫定配備となります。最終的には17機が配備される方針です。
News sources: NHK, ANNnewsCH
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