Nago mayor critical of Prime Minister Abe’s “hardline stance”

Nago mayor critical of Prime Minister Abe’s “hardline stance”

Nago mayor Susumu Inamine criticizes the hardline stance evident in Prime Minister Abe’s Diet remarks on January 13 at Nago City Hall.

January 13, 2016 Ryukyu Shimpo

At a press meeting on January 13, Nago mayor Susumu Inamine criticized recent remarks made by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at a national Diet session. The prime minister said that matters of national security “are not something decided by a single local election.” In response to this, Mayor Inamine stated, “Just because defense matters are decided at the national level, that doesn’t mean it is acceptable to ignore local [wishes] and proceed [with the base relocation].” The Henoko area of Nago is the planned relocation site for U.S. Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Futenma. “The hardline stance of the current administration is evident [from the Prime Minister’s remark],” Inamine added.

Mayor Inamine pointed out that the relocation of MCAS Futenma is a major issue at stake in the Ginowan mayoral election, for which voting will commence on January 24. The election “will have crucial implications for the future of Nago as well,” the mayor stated. He expressed hope for the candidate opposing the Henoko relocation, saying, “If the prefectural governor, the mayor of Ginowan, and the mayor of Nago are unanimous [in opposing the relocation], it will add power to the movement to stop the relocation.”

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga has expressed support for the incumbent Ginowan mayor’s idea to try to bring a Disney-themed resort to Ginowan. Mayor Inamine was critical of this as well, saying, “It is nothing but a pipe dream conjured up as a way to win votes in the election.”

(Translation by T&CT and Sandi Aritza)

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