Japan sends officials to Djibouti for updates on the conflict in Ethiopia

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Japan sent a team of officials from the Foreign and Defense ministries to Djibouti on Friday to gather information about an armed conflict in Ethiopia, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida mentioned.

The move is aimed at preparing for possible evacuation by Japanese Self-Defense Forces aircraft of Japanese citizens from Ethiopia.

About 40 Japanese citizens, excluding embassy staff, remained in Ethiopia as of Friday, according to Foreign Ministry officials.

SDF troops engaged in an antipiracy mission in the Gulf of Aden off the coast of Somalia and their P-3C patrol aircraft are based in Djibouti.

Japan’s Foreign Ministry has issued its most severe evacuation advisory for Japanese nationals in the country.

Earlier this week the National Security Council decided to send a fact-finding team to Djibouti, which accommodates a Japanese Self-Defense Forces base.

A government official mentioned that there have been no reports of the conflict impacting the lives of Japanese nationals in Ethiopia. But the official also said the situation is volatile, and that the government will do its utmost to ensure their safety.