The Japanese government is considering the possibility of deploying Patriot PAC-3 air defense systems in three of its prefectures and sending ships with the Aegis Combat System to the Pacific Ocean following North Korea's warnings of a possible missile launch toward the USA island territory of Guam, the Yomiuri newspaper said on Friday.
Japan has in the past vowed to shoot down North Korean missiles or rockets that threaten to hit its territory.
The Air Self-Defense Force's Patriot Advanced Capability-3 system will likely be deployed in the western prefectures of Shimane, Hiroshima and Kochi, which North Korea said its missiles could cross over, as well as Ehime, the officials said.
Local media said that Japan has deployed Aegis destroyers in the Sea of Japan for shooting down airborne missiles, and the PAC-3 systems are used to counter missiles that evade Aegis interceptors.
In response, US President Donald Trump tweeted that Washington has its military plan "locked and loaded" should Pyongyang "act unwisely".
Japan said on Saturday it has installed anti-missile systems in several parts of the country following North Korea's threat to launch four ballistic missiles towards the American island of Guam. On Friday, President Donald Trump urged North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un not to take any action against the U.S., its territories including Guam or its allies, warning he would regret such a move - and "regret it fast".
The tweet came after Trump told reporters that Pyongyang should be "very, very nervous" if it does anything to the United States, adding that his previous "fire and fury" warning may not have been tough enough.