Japan aims to develop its ownÂ stand-off cruise missile that can be launched fromÂ aircraft, warships and land-based defense systems to engage targets on land and at sea, The Drive reported Tuesday.
The Yomiuri Shimbun, a Japanese newspaper, said that Japan’s defense ministry would study the addition of aÂ land-attack capability to existing anti-ship missile development programs and that research and development would begin inÂ fiscal year 2018.
The report did not specify the future missile’s features but described the weapon as a Japanese version of the Raytheon-madeÂ Tomahawk land attack missiles.
Japan could integrate new long-range cruise missiles with the Aegis Ashore ballistic missile defense architecture that the country is planning to buy, or purchaseÂ Tomahawks for those systems as a supplement to its own weapons, The Drive reported.
The Japanese military could use its ownÂ cruise missile to address security threats posed by North Korea as well as tensionsÂ in the East China Sea, the report noted.