Japan unveils largest warship since WWII amid tensions with China
YOKOHAMA, Japan (AP) - Japan on Tuesday unveiled its biggest warship since World War II, a huge flat-top destroyer that has raised eyebrows in China and elsewhere because it bears a strong resemblance to a conventional aircraft carrier.
The ship, which has a flight deck that is nearly 250 m long, is designed to carry up to 14 helicopters.
Japanese officials say it will be used in national defence - particularly in anti-submarine warfare and border-area surveillance missions - and to bolster the nation's ability to transport personnel and supplies in response to large-scale natural disasters, like the devastating earthquake and tsunami in 2011.
Though the ship - dubbed "Izumo" - has been in the works since 2009, its unveiling comes as Japan and China are locked in a dispute over several small islands located between southern Japan and Taiwan.