Leader of protest against new US base in Henoko quits because of illness
April 21, 2015 Ryukyu Shimpo
The Director of the Okinawa Peace Movement Center Hiroji Yamashiro has decided to retire from the sit-in protest at U.S. Marine Camp Schwab in Henoko, Nago, because of illness. On April 21, many ordinary citizens, including canoeists who protest in the sea off Henoko, gathered at the sit-in to encourage him.
Yamashiro told them that he had to focus on the struggle against his illness. “You make me try harder. I am striving to win victory,” he said.
Hiroshi Ashitomi, co-representative of the Helicopter Base Objection Association, said, “Yamashiro will come back here, the site of our struggle. I think he will overcome his disease with his strong will.”
The governments of Japan and the United States are carrying out preparation work on the seabed at Henoko for the building of a new air base, which is planned to replace the U.S. Marine Corps Air Station at Futenma. According to the protesters, drilling work took place at three locations that day.
(English translation by T&CT)
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