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HOME  > Past issues  > 2017 August 16 - 22  > Anti-base ship of peace and friendship sent from Hiroshima to Okinawa
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2017 August 16 - 22 TOP3 [PEACE]

Anti-base ship of peace and friendship sent from Hiroshima to Okinawa

August 16, 2017

A launching ceremony for a boat to protest against the government’s base-related construction work in Henoko and Oura Bay in Okinawa’s Nago City took place on August 15 near the Teima Fishing Port in the bay.

Her name “Umanchu” means “all people” or “everybody” in the Okinawan dialect. Volunteers in Hiroshima sent local protesters this ship as a token of friendship and peace to be used in their actions.

At the ceremony, anti-U.S. heliport activists and anti-U.S. base on-sea demonstrators stood around Umanchu which was just unloaded at the nearby Teima River and showered her launch with rice wine “sake”, champagne, and rice. They also set off firecrackers to pray for the safety of the ship and the captain.

Nakamoto Koshin, captain of the protest ship “Heiwa Maru”, thanked the Hiroshima supporters, saying, “Today is August 15, the day the Pacific War ended. On this memorable day, I will renew my resolve to continue fighting against the base construction on board Umanchu sent from our friends in the atomic-bombed city of Hiroshima.”

Representatives of the Hiroshima volunteers conveyed the message from Hiroshima, saying, “We’d like you with this boat to protect the peace and the sea of Henoko”.

The head of the local community also said, “I’d like to say ‘thank you’ to the Hiroshima people for offering us such a great gift. We will defeat the central government attempt to force the new U.S. base on Okinawans.”
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