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HOME  > Past issues  > 2018 November 7 - 13  > Koike: Humiliating SOFA should be revised
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2018 November 7 - 13 [POLITICS]

Koike: Humiliating SOFA should be revised

November 8, 2018

Japanese Communist Party Secretariat Head Koike Akira on November 7 referred to the fact that Japan’s governors have agreed to call for a revision of the Japan-U.S. Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA), demanding that the present SOFA, which is an insult to Japan's sovereignty, be altered.

At a House of Councilors Budget Committee meeting on the day, Koike pointed out that in Okinawa, under the SOFA, Japanese investigative authorities are excluded from investigations of serious accidents caused by U.S. military aircraft.

Citing that the National Governors’ Association (NGA) in July unanimously adopted a resolution seeking the revision of the SOFA, Koike stressed that the NGA recognized that compared with other U.S. allies like Germany and Italy, Japan grants extremely preferential privileges to the U.S. military in its SOFA. “Although many of the NGA members are supported by the Liberal Democratic Party, they agreed to adopt the resolution on the SOFA revision. It is of grave significance to the governing LDP,” Koike added.

Foreign Minister Kono Taro said, “NATO member countries assume mutual defense obligations. It is a matter of course that characteristics of the Japan-U.S. SOFA differ from NATO SOFA.”

Koike said, “The current SOFA was bulldozed through the Diet after little discussion. In addition, various secret agreements regarding the SOFA were concluded through closed-door negotiations by the Japan-U.S. joint committee. The SOFA was imposed on Japan by the U.S.,” urging that such an agreement be changed.

Past related article:
> JCP publishes five-point proposal to create a peaceful Japan making best use of pacifist Constitution [October 15, 2018]
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