LWI - Land Warfare

Japan fires howitzers in Australia

5th June 2019 - 08:30 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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The Japan Ground Self Defense Force (JGSDF) has fired two FH-70 howitzers at the Australian Defence Force’s Shoalwater Bay Training Area during Exercise Southern Jackaroo.

Southern Jackaroo is a two-week trilateral ground exercise involving Australia, Japan and the US. The 2019 exercise involves over 150 JGSDF troops along with around 300 US Marine Rotational Force-Darwin members and over 260 soldiers from the Australian Army’s 7th Brigade.

The howitzers were fired at ranges of 25km, a first for the JGSDF as Japanese training areas are not able to accommodate firings at this range. The firing is part of a suite of initiatives agreed to during the Australia-Japan Foreign and Defence Ministers’ Meeting in October 2018 which explored opportunities to increase the complexity and sophistication of the countries’ combined military exercises.

Cmdr of the Australian Army’s 7th Brigade, Brig Andrew Hocking, said: ‘The JGSDF should be proud of the achievements it has made during this exercise and we were proud to be a part of it.

‘The capability is complex, so to prove that their munitions and guns are effective at that range is a real accomplishment.’

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