Japan Peace Conference 2004 held in Sasebo

The annual Japan Peace Conference calling for ending the Japan-U.S. military alliance and the dismantling of U.S. bases in Japan was held from November 20-22 in Sasebo City, Nagasaki Prefecture.

In the keynote speech to an audience of 1,500, Chisaka Jun, Japan Peace Committee secretary general, stressed that this year's conference is taking place at a time when U.S. forces are continuing the killing of people in Fallujah.

Referring to the ongoing realignment of the U.S. forces based on a plan to use their bases in Japan as stepping-stones for their global military attacks and the plan to increase the dispatch of the Japanese Self-Defense Forces abroad, he stressed the need to increase the international solidarity of grassroots movements for peace.

The Japan Peace Conference has been held every year since 1986 by the organizing committee comprising about 30 organizations, including peace organizations and trade unions.

On the second day, participants from around the country discussed the peace Constitution, U.S. bases in Japan, the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty, the Iraq occupation, the Self-Defense Forces, and other issues in workshops of the Japan Peace Conference 2004 on November 21.

1,500 people formed a human chain to surround the U.S. Navy base in protest against the killing in Fallujah

About 1,500 participants in the Japan Peace Conference 2004 linked hands in a human chain surrounding the U.S. Sasebo Navy Base in protest against U.S. military attacks in Fallujah, Iraq.

Participants shouted: "Stop attacking Fallujah!" "No U.S. military realignment aimed at increasing capabilities!" and "Defend Article 9 of the Constitution and withraw the Self-Defense Forces from Iraq!" (end)

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