People caught flying drones over or near U.S. military bases in Japan could face up to a year in prison and fines as much as $4,472 under a planned law change.  COURTESY OF PIXABAY
People caught flying drones over or near U.S. military bases in Japan could face up to a year in prison and fines as much as $4,472 under a planned law change. COURTESY OF PIXABAY

Drones buzzed US bases in Japan 70 times last year, military says

by Seth Robson and Hana Kusumoto
Stars and Stripes

YOKOTA AIR BASE, Japan — Unauthorized drones flew over American military facilities in Japan 70 times in 2018, according to U.S. Forces Japan.

The incidents were revealed after Japan’s Cabinet on Tuesday approved a law change that would ban the remotely piloted aircraft from flying over or within 300 meters — just under 1,000 feet — of U.S. or Japanese military bases.

The drone incursions happened at multiple installations including Camp Schwab on Okinawa and Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni and Camp Zama on Honshu, the largest of the four main islands of Japan, USFJ spokesman Air Force Col. John said in an emailed statement Thursday.

“The unauthorized flight of small, unmanned aircraft systems over military bases and airfields in Japan poses a considerable risk to the safety and security of the people who live and work on those installations, as well as the local communities around these installations,” he said.

Read more at: https://www.stripes.com/1.571691

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