Okinawa Prefectural Assembly adopts protest resolution on stray bullet at Camp Hansen and parachute drop training in Kadena Base

Okinawa Prefectural Assembly adopts protest resolution on stray bullet at Camp Hansen and parachute drop training in Kadena Base

The Okinawa Prefectural Assembly unanimously passed protest resolutions and opinion letters regarding the "stray bullet" accident that took place at Camp Hansen and the parachute drop training conducted at the Kadena Air Base, on May 2 at the prefectural assembly main conference room.


May 3, 2017 Ryukyu Shimpo

The Okinawa Prefectural Assembly held an extraordinary plenary session on May 2, and unanimously passed a protest resolution and an opinion letter asking for an investigation into the cause of the alleged stray bullet incident and prevention of a recurrence. At the Afuso Dam construction site in the U.S. military’s Camp Hansen, Onna Village, a bullet-like object, which hit and damaged a construction vehicle and a water tank, was recently found.

In addition, the assembly unanimously adopted a protest resolution and an opinion letter regarding the parachute drop training conducted at Kadena Air Base on April 24.

The resolution and opinion letter regarding the suspected stray bullet asked for a thorough investigation of the relationship between the training and the accident, prompt announcement of the results and suspension of the training until the recurrence prevention measures are carried out, noting that “it gave great disturbance and fear to the citizens who are forced to live with danger because even the slightest mistake will result in a disaster involving human life.”

The assembly made five requests, including a revision of the Japan-U.S. Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) in order to allow local municipalities’ staff and the prefectural police officers to enter the U.S. military facilities and conduct a quick investigation, and detailed prior notification of exercise and training.

The resolution and opinion letter regarding the parachute drop training requested that the training not be conducted in the future, claiming, “it is absolutely dangerous training that might have caused serious accidents involving residents. This is not tolerable and it is nothing but an increase of the burden of the base on the people.”

The resolutions and opinion papers will be sent to U.S. ambassadors to Japan and the commander of all U.S. forces in Japan, the Prime Minister, the Foreign Affairs Minister and the Defense Minister.

(English translation by T&CT)

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