Mayor Sakima of Ginowan discusses Futenma Air Station’s return with Senator McCain

Mayor Sakima of Ginowan discusses Futenma Air Station’s return with Senator McCain

Mayor Sakima answering reporters’ questions in Washington, DC (photo courtesy of the U.S. State Department)


April 29, 2016 Ryukyu Shimpo

On April 27, during Mayor of Ginowan City Atsushi Sakima’s visit to the United States, he had successive discussions with the Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC) chairman John McCain (R-AZ) and SASC member Mazie Hirono (D-HI) on Capitol Hill. Mayor Sakima pointed out that despite the fact it has been 20 years since the agreement was made between the U.S. and Japan for Futenma Air Station to be returned to Japan, the return has not yet taken place. He said that, “Twenty years is a long time,” and, “It is important that the return [of Futenma] take place as soon as possible.”

At his discussion with Sakima, McCain emphasized that it is necessary to have the Futenma relocation facility constructed prior to returning Futenma to Japan. McCain also pointed out that resolving the Futenma relocation issue is a huge concern, and made clear that the U.S. intends to work with the Japanese government and Ginowan City to realize the return of Futenma.

Sakima finished everything on his schedule in order to make his appeal in Washington on April 27. In an interview he said that he was able to directly convey the frank opinions of Okinawan citizens to many Americans involved in the Futenma issue, and felt that being able to make his appeal heard in Washington was a great accomplishment. He also said, “My sentiment that we must achieve the return of Futenma [to Japan] has been strengthened.”

(English translation by T&CT and Erin Jones)

Go to Japanese

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


Previous Article:
Next Article:

[Similar Articles]