19:21 GMT +314 October 2019
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    Japan releases footage showing South Korea warship allegedly locking its radar on a Japanese patrol plane

    WATCH: Japan Shares Video of South Korean Ship Allegedly Locking Radar on Plane

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    Japan's Ministry of Defense released video footage on Friday to support its claims that a South Korean naval ship locked its fire-control radar antenna onto a Japanese plane during a patrol in the Sea of Japan.

    The 13-minute video shows the December 20 encounter, in which a Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force P-1 patrol plane is surveilling the Republic of Korea (ROK) naval vessel Gwanggaeto-daewang and the ROK coast guard rescue vessel Sambongho 5001.

    Matters quickly escalate after the patrol plane conducts a flyby of the South Korean warship and is subsequently targeted by the vessel's fire-control radar, which is used to pinpoint the location of a target for missiles or shells.

    ​"She's emitting radar… she's emitting fire-control type radar," a crew member aboard the patrol plane says. "Moving away from the vessel for the time being… the sound is so loud."

    Moving away from the warship, the aircraft's crew later attempts to reach out to the sailors aboard Gwanggaeto-daewang. "Korean naval ship, Korean naval ship, hull number 971, hull number 971, this is Japan Navy, this is Japan Navy," the crew member says in English. "We observed that your FC antenna is directed at us. What is the purpose of your act? Over."

    The crew aboard the patrol plane was met with complete radio silence, despite relaying their calls through various radio channels.

    In response to the video, South Korea's Defense Ministry called the footage "one-sided," adding that it "cannot be regarded as objective evidence." Since the incident, Seoul has denied the allegations, instead explaining that the warship was looking for a North Korean fishing boat that had drifted near the inter-Korean sea border, AFP reports.

    "As we have stated repeatedly, the Gwanggaeto destroyer was engaging in a normal rescue operation, and it remains as a fact that the ship did not use [the fire-control radar]," the ministry said in a statement.

    "Instead, it is very disappointing that the Japanese patrol aircraft conducted a low-altitude flight in a threatening manner against our ship, which was involved in a humanitarian rescue mission."

    In releasing the footage, Japan has stressed that its aircraft had been "flying at a certain altitude and distance safe enough from the destroyer."

    The video drop comes just one day after the working-level meeting on the incident held between officials from Japan and South Korea Thursday. Japanese Defense Minister Takeshi Iwaya told reporters Friday that he allowed the release of the footage to demonstrate that the country's forces had acted appropriately, AFP reported.


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