Officially labelled as a destroyer, it will have a flat top that will function as a flight deck for helicopters. The vessel has been criticized as a thinly veiled attempt to boost the country’s military capabilities.
Currently Japan is limited by its constitution to self-defense only, but rising tensions with China has led to fears of an escalation of a dispute over island. Japanese officials have insisted the ship will be used to assist humanitarian missions and large-scale evacuations following events like the 2011 tsunami.
Operated by: Japanese Navy
Number in fleet: 1 with two more planned
Displacement: 27,000 tons
Maximum speed: 30 knots
Weapons: 14 helicopters and anti-submarine warfare