Japanese servicemen in Iraq are prohibited to drink alcohol, to eat pork and recommended to grow moustache to look more like the native population
Japanese servicemen in Iraq are prohibited to drink alcohol, to eat pork and recommended to grow moustache to look more like the native population.
Shigeru Ishiba, the Japanese defense chief said during his appearance in the parliament: "We studied the Iraqi traditions. Every man on service in the Middle East must respect the Islamic culture and religion."
Japanese servicemen have taken the recommendations of the command rather seriously. The national TV reporting about transportation of the troops showed commander of the advanced detachment in Iraq, Colonel Masahisa Sato with "picturesque eastern stubble" on his face.
Tokyo plans to deploy a contingent of up to 1,000 people including civil doctors and technical experts in the Persian Gulf. It is for the first time after WWII that Japan troops are sent to a region where operations are conducted.
Japan continuously emphasize that its mission is to grant humanitarian aid to the Iraqi population - to clear the water, render medical care and reconstruct schools. Soldiers and officers of the self-defense troops are prohibited to use weapons unless for self-defense.