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Japanese China Area Fleet

The China Area Fleet was the only significant portion of the Japanese Navy that was not under the command of Combined Fleet. It was organized to support the interminable war in China and consisted largely of naval infantry of the Special Naval Landing Forces, their supporting naval aircraft, and some river gunboats and destroyers.

2 China Fleet was originally organized in January 1941 to carry out coastal operations along the Fukien coast south to Canton. Four divisions and an air division were detailed to the fleet and eight regimental-scale amphibious landings took place in February and March alone, helping to seal off the Chinese coast.

Administrative structure, 7 December 1941:

China Area Fleet (Koga; at Shanghai)
   CL Idzumo


AK Banshu Maru #21

AK Minowa Maru

AK Tenran Maru

AK Zuiho Maru

AO Juko Maru (478 tons)


AO Koryu Maru (6680 tons, 12 knots)

AO Moji Maru

PT Hiyodori (with Hong Kong Attack Force)

DMS W-28

AGS Hausa

China Area Fleet Air Group (at Shanghai)

    8 B5M Mabel


1 L3Y Tina

Shanghai Special Base Force (Makita)


DD Hasu


DDKuri


DD Tsuga


AGP Nihonkai Maru (2684 tons)


Shanghai SNLF


Gunboat Division 13


    PG Hyakufuku Maru (986 tons)



PG Shosei Maru (998 tons)



PG Unkai Maru #1 (2225 tons)


Gunboat Division 14



PG Nishho Maru



PG Shinko Maru #1 (935 tons)



PG Tosho Maru (1289 tons)

1 China Fleet (Komatsu; at Hankow)


PG Ataka


10 river gunboats


Hankow SNLF


Yangtze River Squadron (Komatsu)



Ankei SNLF (at Anking)



Yangtze SNLF (at Hankow)

2 China Fleet (Niimi; at Canton)


9 river gunboats


2 China Fleet Air Group



4 E7K Alf


Torpedo Boat Division 11 (with Hong Kong Attack Force)



PT Kiji



PT Kari


15 Mixed Squadron (Koga M.)



CL Isuzu



PG Hashidate



PT Kamo (234 tons)



PT Kasasagi (with Hong Kong Attack Force)


Canton Special Base Force (Inoue)



PG Uji



PG Muro Maru Possibly used as a hospital ship?



PG Hitonose



PG Sozan Maru



PG Saga



Minesweeper Division 4



    AMc Ranzan Maru (219 tons)





AK Tsukushi Maru (1859 tons; on loan to 14 Army)     



Amoy Special Base Force (Hatakeyama)



PG Kasajima



PG Seisho Maru

3 China Fleet (Kawase; at Sanya)


3 China Fleet Air Group



4 E7K Alf


South Patrol Division (Kawase)



CL Iwate



PY Renun Ko



PY Sekikyusho


Hainan Naval District (Sunagawa)



1 Maizuru SNLF



4 Yokosuka SNLF



8 Sasebo SNLF



Hainan Air Group




4 B5M Mabel



Torpedo Boat Division 1




PT Hayabusa




PTOtori




PY-1




PY-2


Tsingtao Air Group



4 E7K Alf

Task forces, 7 December 1941:

Hong Kong Attack Force (Niimi; off Hong Kong)      
  PT Hiyodori

Elements, 2 China Fleet

  Torpedo Boat Division 11


  PT Kiji



PT Kari



PT Kasasagi On loan from 15 Mixed Squadron

Elements, Destroyer Division 6 On loan from DesRon1, First Fleet


DD Ikazuchi


DD Inazuma

References

Peattie et al. (2011)

Prados (1995)



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