Zushi City to sue government over U.S. military housing construction

The City Assembly of Zushi, Kanagawa Prefecture, on September 16 unanimously decided to take the central government to court in protest against the plan to build additional U.S. military housing units in an area covering parts of Zushi and Yokohama in complete disregard of the promise it made to Kanagawa Prefecture and Zushi City.

The bill submitted by Zushi Mayor Nagashima Kazuyoshi is aimed at pressuring the government to comply with the 1994 three-party agreement and consider environmental conservation.

In 1994, the central government made an agreement with Kanagawa Prefecture and Zushi City to not build additional facilities in the U.S. Navy Ikego residential area in Zushi and Yokohama.

Iwamuro Toshiharu, Japanese Communist Party member of the Zushi City Assembly, said, "The adoption of the unanimous bill shows the strong determination of the mayor, assembly, and residents to block the construction. The government should immediately withdraw the plan."

Between 1993 and 1998, ignoring residents' concerns, the government built 854 U.S. military housing units in the Zushi part of the Ikego area. About 80 billion yen in tax money was spent for the construction. (end)

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