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Monday, June 28, 2010

Chairman of Okinawa Assembly asks Obama to scrap new U.S. military base construction proposal at Henoko

Last week, the Okinawa assembly head asked Obama to scrap Futenma plan, according to the The Mainichi Daily News on June 21:
The chairman of the Okinawa prefectural assembly on Monday handed U.S. Ambassador to Japan John Roos a letter calling for scrapping a plan to transfer the Marine Corps' Futenma Air Station within the southern prefecture.

Zenshin Takamine said in the letter addressed to U.S. President Barack Obama that 90 percent of residents in the prefecture are opposed to the plan to move the airfield in the city of Ginowan to the Henoko district of Nago, as agreed on last month between the Japanese and U.S. governments.

Takamine also urged Washington to shut down the Futenma base in a residential area and return its land to Japan. Roos, who met Takamine in the prefectural capital of Naha, promised to give the letter to Obama, according to officials with knowledge of the meeting.

Takamine added he hopes Obama will visit Peace Memorial Park in the city of Itoman in the future, saying the main monument there has the names of about 14,000 American servicemen who lost their lives in battles in Okinawa during World War II.

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