Okinawa Prefectural Assembly unanimously moves to request that the government not submit the Henoko evaluation report

Okinawa Prefectural Assembly unanimously moves to request that the government not submit the Henoko evaluation report

At the extraordinary meeting held at the Prefectural Assembly Hall on November 14, the Okinawa Prefectural Assembly unanimously adopted a written statement requesting that the central government abandon the submission of the Environmental Impact Statement.


November 15, 2011

In an extraordinary meeting held on November 14, the Okinawa Prefectural Assembly, chaired by Zenshin Takamine, unanimously decided to ask the central government not to submit the evaluation report on the environmental impact of the relocation of United States Marine Corps Air Station Futenma to Henoko in Nago. The written statement will be sent to the Prime Minister, Defense Minister, Foreign Minister and Minister in Charge of Okinawa. Through this statement, the Assembly has once again indicated its strong desire to reject the government’s plan to move forward with the legal procedures related to relocating the facilities at Futenma within the prefecture.

A delegation from the Okinawa Prefectural Assembly mainly comprising people on the Special Committee on U.S. Military Bases (chairperson – Kiyoko Tokashiki) will visit the Okinawa Defense Bureau and Okinawa Liaison Office of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on November 17 to hand over the statement. On November 18, the delegation members will also visit Tokyo to make the same request directly to the Prime Minister and Defense Minister.

In the written statement, the Assembly criticized the central government’s intention to submit the evaluation report before the end of this year, pointing out that, “This is an attempt to avoid the situation in which the success or failure of the Defense Authorization Bill in the U.S. Senate, which is under pressure to cut defense spending, pushes both governments into a corner on the relocation plan,” and that such an attitude, “runs counter to the will of the people of Okinawa Prefecture, and as such is not something that can be overlooked.” The Assembly requested that the government abandon the submission of the evaluation report, and again expressed its opposition to the plan to relocate Futenma within Okinawa, instead requesting relocation outside of the prefecture.

Yoshihiko Yoshimoto, a member of the Assembly from Nago and the Liberal Democratic Party, had indicated that he would abstain from voting, but he was absent due to ill health.

Assembly Chairman Takamine was critical of the news that during his meeting with U.S. President Barack Obama at the U.S.-Japan summit held in Honolulu on November 12 Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda vowed to submit the evaluation report before the end of the year. He said, “There has not been sufficient explanation, and there is no level of understanding or cooperation from the people. It is a statement that seems like a snap decision.” At his press conference after the extraordinary meeting he said, “That our written statement was unanimously supported is very significant. We would like the government to respect the Assembly resolution in accordance with the Local Government Act.”

(English Translation by T&CT, Mark Ealey)

Go To Japanese



Go To Video1

Share on Facebook0Share on Google+0Tweet about this on Twitter0
 


Previous Article:
Next Article:

[Similar Articles]