The US has agreed to return 40 percent of the airspace controlled by Yokota AB, Japan, to Japan. A US Forces Japan spokesman told Stars and Stripes that the deal would not impact either US or Japanese military operations. The US agreed to “redesign” Yokota airspace to aid commercial air traffic around Tokyo and the planned expansion of Tokyo’s Haneda Airport in 2009. The agreement, reached Friday after months of negotiation and speculation, would have the turnover take place by September 2008. Yokota is home to USAF’s only tactical airlift unit in the Pacific region.
Three B-1B Lancers from the 7th Bomb Wing flew over the Indo-Pacific alongside F-16s from the Japanese Air Self-Defense Force as part of a joint large force exercise. The mission began and ended in the continental U.S. The bombers flew 31 hours and landed Jan. 11.