Guam set to oppose relocation of 8,000 Marines to island from Okinawa

Mainichi Daily News
April 2, 2010

The local community in the U.S. territory of Guam is leaning toward rejecting the planned relocation of about 8,000 U.S. Marines to the island from Okinawa Prefecture.

The local governor, who had initially expressed his willingness to host the troops, is now calling for a delay in the deadline for the relocation, set at 2014.

While Japanese legislators and government officials insisting that U.S. Marine Corps Air Station Futenma be moved out of Japan hope Guam will host a substitute facility, growing anti-base sentiment in the island community has cast a shadow over even the already agreed-upon relocation of some 8,000 Marines.

The recent dispute in Guam over the relocation of Marines suggests that the situation on this resort island is similar to that of Okinawa, where residents are protesting the excessive burden of hosting U.S. bases in Japan and historically unequal relations between the island prefecture and the central government. …