Japan is planning to build its own missiles that could strike North Korea, as it ramps up its defense systems to prepare for any anticipated threats.

The ruling Liberal Democratic Party signed off on a defense proposal Wednesday that would give the country the ability to launch pre-emptive strikes on overseas missile bases, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Part of the arms race is to develop a high-speed gliding missile capable of traveling more than 600 miles, placing both North Korea and China in range, according to the Times of London.

The country will also upgrade an existing ground-to-sea missile into a weapon that can fly around 128 miles — a project that will cost around $321,000, the Times reported.

The changes come amid a growing belief that Japan needs to be able to destroy North Korean missiles on the ground before they’re launched into the air, the newspaper reported.

Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga denied Wednesday that the new missile system is a threat to Hermit Kingdom, the Wall Street Journal reported.

“It is not aimed at attacking enemy bases,” Suga said.

A North Korean rocket launcher being tested in March.
A North Korean rocket launcher being tested in March.
KCNA via Reuters

North Korea state media accused Japan earlier this week of “acts to realize overseas aggression” amid its increased defense spending, UPI reported.

“Time may pass and the [Japanese] regime may change, but the fundamental militaristic nature of Japan remains unchanged,” state-controlled news agency KCNA said.

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