Okinawa Governor protests to Defense Minister, saying “This is insane behavior”

October 17, 2012 Ryukyu Shimpo

In the morning of October 17, Okinawa Governor Hirokazu Nakaima met with Defense Minister Satoshi Morimoto to strongly protest about the case in which two U.S. sailors have been charged with rape. The governor asked the minister to make the U.S. military prevent the recurrence of such crimes and incidents and cooperate with the Japanese police now investigating this case. Nakaima stated in a strong tone, “A U.S. soldier assaulted a woman in August, and now the same type of crime has occurred two months later. This is just insane. We need not only to have the law enforced, but also we need to revise the Status of Forces Agreement. If we do not do this, the same type of incidents will continue to occur again and again.”

Morimoto said, “The government takes this case seriously. I think that there is something wrong with the guidance given in the U.S. military. I will press them to implement stricter and more specific measures.” He signaled his intention to convene a Joint Committee meeting in which he will raise questions to the United States about the enforcement of the law and measures to prevent recurrence of such crimes.

(English translation by T&CT, Mark Ealey)

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