Officials confirm suspicious balloon overflights of Japan, won’t say they came from China

TOKYO, Feb 11 ( - The Japanese have had their own instances of unidentified flying objects and surveillance balloons sighted over the country in the past few years, Japan’s Defense Minister Yasukazu Hamada said Friday.

Japan saw flying objects in June 2020 and September 2021, Hamada said during a press conference at the Ministry of Defense. He added that in January 2022, a similar balloon was sighted over the high seas west of Kyushu by a patrol aircraft conducting surveillance in the area.

Hamada declined to give more details on specific instances, saying that disclosure of such infromation would reveal Japan’s intelligence gathering capabilities.

Though Hamada did not state the locations, in June 2020 in Sendai and in September 2021 in Hachinohe, both on the main island of Honshu, unidentified objects had been sighted in both areas, which host a number of Japanese military bases. ...continue reading