Entries Tagged as 'Japan'

Japan protests to China over Okinawa claim

Channel News Asia
May 9, 2013

Japan has lodged a diplomatic protest with China over an article in a state-run publication that challenged Japan’s ownership of Okinawa, home to major US bases, officials said Thursday.

Japan has lodged a diplomatic protest with China over an article in a state-run publication that challenged Japan’s ownership of Okinawa, home to major US bases, officials said Thursday.

The People’s Daily, the mouthpiece of the ruling Communist Party, on Wednesday published a call for a review of Japan’s sovereignty over Okinawa, suggesting that Beijing may be the rightful owner.

The call came as the two countries are already at loggerheads over islands in the East China Sea.

“We have protested both in Tokyo and Beijing over the commentary issued by the People’s Daily, followed by a Chinese foreign ministry comment,” a Japanese foreign ministry official in charge of Chinese affairs told AFP.

“We told them that if the Chinese government shares the position of casting doubt about Japan’s ownership of Okinawa, we would never accept it and firmly protest at it,” he said.

“The Chinese side replied to us that the view in the commentary was solely held by researchers,” he added.

The lengthy article in the People’s Daily argued that the country may have rights to the Ryukyu chain, which includes Okinawa. …

Read on: www.channelnewsasia.com/news/asiapacific/japan-protests-to-china-over-okinawa-cla/668800.html

Okinawans protest Japan policy on US occupation of Okinawa

April 28, 2013

While the Japanese mainland celebrated Sunday, Okinawans staged a protest rally over the national 61st anniversary of the country receiving its postwar independence through a treaty with the United States.

Many here see Tokyo’s decision in 1952 to allow the continued U.S. occupation of Okinawa while brokering mainland Japan’s freedom as a betrayal – a move that led to generations of unrest and political friction over the large foreign military presence on the island that continues to complicate U.S.-Japan relations today.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, a conservative elected last fall, stoked anger from Okinawans and the prefectural government by deciding to mark the anniversary, which island residents call a “day of humiliation”. Despite a public statement by the administration calling for the nation to remember Okinawan suffering, the island’s prefectural assembly recently cast a vote unanimously opposing the Sunday’s anniversary celebration.

“Prime Minister Abe woke a sleeping dog” and rekindled sorrow and disappointment, said Takeshi Onaga, mayor of Naha, Okinawa’s capital.

Thousands gathered at a seaside park Sunday for a rally against what many residents see as the island’s U.S. military plight at the hands of Tokyo. On Thursday, Onaga and more than 600 people gathered in Naha for a forum on the anniversary celebration of the San Francisco Treaty, which officially ended the war with Japan, granted the country its sovereignty – except for Okinawa and two other smaller island areas – and laid out a plan for war reparations.

The U.S. occupation and government administration of Okinawa continued until 1972, when it was returned to Tokyo’s control. It has since remained the base for the majority of U.S. military forces stationed in Japan, including one of the largest air bases in the world and Marine jungle-warfare training grounds …

Read on: www.presstv.ir/usdetail/300751.html

Crimes by US military concentrated around US bases

Japan Press Weekly
March 7, 2013

It has been revealed that crimes in Okinawa committed by U.S. military personnel are concentrated in areas around U.S. bases.

At the request of Japanese Communist Party Okinawa Prefectural Assembly member Toguchi Osamu, the Okinawa Prefectural Police Headquarters on March 6 released the findings of U.S. crimes. This is the first time for the prefectural police to publish the data of each district police station.

According to the released materials, U.S. military personnel have committed a total of 1,805 criminal offenses in the prefecture from 1989 to 2013. Of them, the largest number is 1,045 handled by the Okinawa police department, which has the U.S. Kadena Air Base in its jurisdiction. It is followed by 287 of the Ginowan police department with jurisdiction over the U.S. Futenma base and 167 of the Ishikawa police department with Camp Courtney in its district.

Tellingly, no crimes by U.S. soldiers occurred in the areas of the police departments of Itoman and Miyako, which have no U.S. bases. …

Read on: www.japan-press.co.jp/modules/news/index.php?id=5340

US sailors admit raping woman in Japan

February 26, 2013

Two American sailors have admitted to raping a woman in the Japanese island of Okinawa last October in a case that sparked huge anti-US sentiments in Japan.

Both servicemen, Skyler Dozierwalker and Christopher Browning, pleaded guilty on Tuesday during a hearing in Naha District Court.

The 23-year-old and 24-year-old men told the court that they attacked the woman during a trip to Okinawa in October.

Around 47,000 US military personnel are currently stationed in Japan. Some half of the US troops are stationed in Okinawa, where the soldiers have reportedly committed more than 5,700 crimes since Washington returned the island to Japan in 1972.

The rape in Okinawa provoked outrage and led to a nationwide curfew on all American military personnel.

Multiple cases of misconduct by US forces have raised anti-American feelings among the islanders. …

Read on: www.presstv.com/detail/2013/02/26/290871/us-sailors-admit-raping-woman-in-japan/

Move Afoot To Relocate US Military Base In Japan’s Okinawa Island

RTT News
February 26, 2013

Japan’s Defense Ministry officials on Tuesday held talks with a fishing cooperative of Nago city in the Okinawa prefecture on reclaiming land off the city’s coast for the relocation of a U.S. air base.

The move comes after Prime Minister Shinzo Abe promised President Barack Obama that he would take immediate steps to relocate the U.S. Futenma Marine Corps Air Station in accordance with a bilateral agreement between the two countries, Japanese media reported.

Defense Ministry officials met with representatives of the Nago Fisheries Cooperative Association and handed over papers seeking their approval. The Ministry plans to file for a permit with the prefectural government for the land reclamation project. …

Relocation of the Futenma base is a longstanding demand of the people of Okinawa as it was located in a densely populated area. …

Read in full: www.rttnews.com/2064327/move-afoot-to-relocate-us-military-base-in-japan-s-okinawa-island.aspx?type=gn&utm_source=google&utm_campaign=sitemap

Jets roar over Pacific skies as US military gathers allies in drills, to keep ahead of China

Washington Post
By Associated Press
February 8, 2013

ANDERSEN AIR FORCE BASE, Guam — Fighter jets from the U.S. and two key allies roared into western Pacific skies in the combat phase of annual exercises that have gained importance as the region responds to the rise of China and other potential threats.

The Cope North drills — which could soon swell in participants — are aimed at preparing air forces of the U.S., Japan and Australia to fight together if a military crisis erupts. They also send a vivid reminder to Beijing that America’s regional alliances are strong, though officers leading the maneuvers say they are not looking to bait the Chinese military.

“The training is not against a specific country, like China,” Japan Air Self-Defense Force Lt. Gen. Masayuki Hironaka said. “However, I think (the fact) that our alliance with the U.S. and Australia is healthy is a strong message.”

The three allies began flying sorties together earlier in the week around the U.S. territory of Guam in a humanitarian phase of the exercises, dropping emergency assistance in packages that wafted down under parachutes to jungle airfields. On Thursday, fighter jets were joined by bombers, transport planes and tankers that refuel the fighters in midair. For the first time, Japanese tankers were joining the drills. …

Read on: www.washingtonpost.com/world/asia_pacific/jets-roar-over-pacific-skies-as-us-military-gathers-allies-in-drills-to-keep-ahead-of-china/2013/02/07/6628192e-7193-11e2-b3f3-b263d708ca37_story.html

Japanese Sue U.S. Government

Prensa Latina News Agency

Okinawa residents accused the U.S. government on Friday of responsibility for health problems arising from the presence of Kadena Air Base.
About 140 citizens brought a lawsuit against the White House in Naha District Court on the grounds that the takeoffs and landings of U.S. planes have led to insomnia and hearing problems.

The plaintiffs are demanding a ban on flights at night and early morning hours and also the payment of $2,600,000 dollars to compensate for damages and losses caused by the practices of the U.S. military.

The residents’ spokesman, Shusei Arakawa, wants to bring the U.S. government to justice in order to recognize the burden on Okinawa imposed since the end of World War II.

The aforementioned prefecture returned to Japanese jurisdiction in 1972 after almost 28 years of being occupied and controlled by Washington, although more than 70 percent of the U.S. bases in Japan are located in that southern territory.

From: www.plenglish.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=760431&Itemid=1

Okinawa residents lodge lawsuit over US flight noise

Xinhua, November 30, 2012

More than 140 residents lived near Kadena air base of U.S. Air Force in Japan’s Okinawa lodged a lawsuit on Friday to try to ban the night and early morning flights at the base and asked for damages payment.

The accusers filed the lawsuit with local court in the city of Okinawa, complaining that they have suffered from aircraft noise which made them difficult to sleep in the night and early morning.

Among other 22,000 plaintiffs of anther lawsuit against such flights, the 144 accusers also asked for a payment of 216 million yen (about 2.56 million U.S. dollars) in damages.

Okinawa Governor Hirokazu Nakaima said Friday that he will continue pushing the plan to relocate the U.S. bases outside his prefecture despite a potential change of government after next month’s general election.

Japan and its U.S. alliance are at odds on the issue of removing U.S. Air Force bases in Okinawa to other places for years. But the two sides still can not reach an agreement.


Dalai Lama laments US bases in Japan

Saudi Gazette
November 13, 2012

The Dalai Lama on Monday lamented the US military presence in Japan at a press conference in Okinawa, where anti-American feeling has flared after alleged crimes by servicemen. “It is not right to have foreign military bases, but such situations unfortunately exist all around the world,” the Tibetan spiritual leader told reporters, according to Jiji Press. Deep-seated anti-Americanism in Okinawa has intensified following the alleged rape of a local woman by two servicemen and the alleged assault on a schoolboy by another. The second incident came days after top brass imposed a nationwide night-time curfew on all US military personnel as they looked to quell rising anger over the first case.


Okinawans demand closure of U.S. bases

The Japan Times
October 18, 2012

Okinawans expressed anger Wednesday over the alleged rape of a local woman by U.S. sailors, an incident that came hot on the heels of another alleged sexual assault involving a marine in the prefecture.

Calls to remove all U.S. bases from Okinawa swelled in response to the rape allegations, with Miyoko Ashimine, head of a local group dealing with gender issues, demanding their immediate closure.

“With Ospreys in the sky and weapons on land, where can local residents walk (in safety)?” asked Ashimine, referring to the U.S. Marine Corps’ recent deployment of tilt-rotor MV-22 Ospreys to the Futenma air station on Okinawa Island despite safety concerns.

The chairman of Okinawa’s prefectural assembly, Masaharu Kina, said local residents have suffered since the end of World War II because of the presence of U.S. bases.

“The United States says it will enforce strict discipline every time there is an incident, but that won’t resolve anything,” Kina said. …

Read on: www.japantimes.co.jp/text/nn20121018a9.html