Japan launches 1st vessel of future class destroyer

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The first ship of the "Akizuki" class destroyer, a future destroyer class of the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF), was launched on Wednesday at the Nagasaki shipyard of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, local media reported.

Another three ships of the design have been planned by 2014. The ships of this design displace about 5,000 tonnes of water and are able to carry a total of 200 people.

They will be equipped with weapons including the type 90 surface to surface missiles and anti-torpedo system. The ship can also carry two helicopters.

The class was known as "19 DD." The destroyer of this class was an improvement on the Takanami class.

The ships would enhance the JMSDF's performance in battles at sea, analysts said.

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