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HOME  > Past issues  > 2017 November 29 - December 5  > Okinawa Pref. Assembly unanimously demands that USMC leave Japan
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2017 November 29 - December 5 [US FORCES]

Okinawa Pref. Assembly unanimously demands that USMC leave Japan

November 30, 2017
The Okinawa Prefectural Assembly on November 28 adopted by unanimous vote a written opinion pressing the Japanese and U.S. governments to promptly move the U.S. Marine Corps out of Japan or at the least Okinawa.

This is the first-ever opinion approved by all the assemblypersons, including those of the Liberal Democratic Party, calling for the USMC removal. To date, the LDP group in the assembly had voted against similar resolutions.

Okinawans' anger reached a peak, bringing about a shift in the LDP lawmakers' attitude. The unanimous consensus this time may be a result of the fact that countermeasures against crimes and accidents committed by U.S. military personnel have been totally ineffective.

The opinion came in response to the car crash (Nov. 19) killing an Okinawan man caused by US marine's drunk driving. It demands that an apology and compensation payments be immediately made to the bereaved family; the Okinawa-based USMC be moved out of Japan or at the least Okinawa without delay; the commanding officers or bosses of U.S. servicepersons and U.S. military-attached civilian employees who committed serious crimes be dismissed; and the Japan-U.S. Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) be drastically revised.

During a special committee meeting held the day before, Japanese Communist Party assemblyperson Toguchi Osamu, the head of the JCP group, said, "The JCP takes the position that the USMC should return to the United States and should not be in Japan. However, we will vote for the written opinion tomorrow as we believe it is important to achieve a unanimous vote calling for the ousting of the USMC at the least from Okinawa."

Past related articles:
> Gov. Onaga lodges protest over US marine's drunk-driving that killed Okinawan [November 21, 2017]
> Only by removing US bases can incidents involving US soldiers be eliminated [November 21, 2017]
> Over 210,000 incidents involving US soldiers occur since 1952 in Japan [November 19 & 20, 2017]
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