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Japan against diverting oil

The Japanese government asked oil recipient nations benefiting from Japan's resumed refueling mission not to divert the oil to other purpose than anti-terrorism operations.

The Cabinet of Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda approved the plan in the morning and is scheduled to exchange diplomatic documents on the issue with the United States, Britain, France, Germany, Canada and Pakistan, officials familiar with the affair said.

There emerged allegation later last year inside Japan, condemning that some oil and other supplies provided by Japan had been used by the United States in its operations in Iraq.

Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (MSDF) vessels left home ports in mid January for the journey to resume the refueling mission in the Indian Ocean to support the US-led anti-terrorism mission in and around Afghanistan. The refueling action may be back into order later this month.

The MSDF had been out of the refueling mission for three month since November 1 because of the expiration of an original special measures law authorizing the mission and the void of a new legislation due to political strife.

The ruling coalition managed the new bill through the Diet at last with the help of a controversial and seldom-used parliamentary rule. (Xinhua)