Okinawa Association of Tokyo resolves to request cancellation of Henoko relocation
June 19, 2015 Ryukyu Shimpo
On June 18, the Okinawa Association of Tokyo passed a resolution requesting cancellation of the plan to relocate U.S. Marine Corp Air Station Futenma to Henoko, Nago. The association consists of approximately 360 members. President of the association Takeo Nakamatsu visited Okinawa Governor Takeshi Onaga at the Prefectural Government office and conveyed his objection to the Henoko relocation. More determined than ever, Nakamatsu said, “We request the governments of the U.S. and Japan give up the construction of a new base that will destroy precious natural resources and leave further problems in the future.”
The Association reached an agreement at a board meeting held on June 6. The agreement will be announced in the association report. Despite electoral victories for candidates against the Henoko relocation at last year’s gubernatorial election, Lower House election, and Nago mayor election, the Japanese government has been forcing through the relocation. Regarding this, Nakamatsu stressed, “The central government’s attitude of ignoring the Okinawan public undermines democracy and local autonomy in Japan. Japan’s democracy has been called into question.”
Interviewed by the Ryukyu Shimpo, Nakamatsu said, “At the board meeting, some people expressed their concerns about bringing politics into the association. However, the board reached a consensus view that this is an Okinawan heartfelt appeal more than it is a political issue.”
Also, Nakamatsu requested Onaga attend “National Okinawa Association Exchange Conference,” which will be held on October 3, in Tokyo. Onaga expressed interest in attending.
President Takashi Higa of the Okinawa Association of Kawasaki accompanied Nakamatsu to support the resolution.
(English translation by T&CT and Megumi Chibana)
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