|JAPAN TO END MAIN MISSION|
Japan's prime minister says his administration will end its main UN peacekeeping mission in South Sudan. The government will not send another team to replace the current unit.
It started sending the SDF members in 2012 to help restore the newly established nation, which has grappled with violence. The scope of the mission did not include combat or other security enforcement work. That's because of strict limitations in Japan's war-renouncing Constitution. But the Abe administration has given the current unit an expanded role, allowing it to come to the defense of UN staff in the event they come under attack.
The deployment has been heavily debated in the Diet. Japan's self-imposed criteria limit the SDF to areas where ceasefires are in place.
Opposition lawmakers grilled the government on the security situation in South Sudan. But Japan's top government spokesperson says the decision isn't because of the worsening security. He said it's because the government recognizes that the mission has achieved certain results.