August 21, 2012
Around 300 people on August 20 held a rally in front of the U.S. Marine Corps Camp Zukeran to protest the sexual assault of a woman by a marine two days ago in Naha City.
The participants called on the U.S.M.C to formally apologize to the victim and strictly punish the marine.
Some female members of prefectural and national assemblies took part in the action.
Japanese Communist Party member of the Okinawa Prefectural Assembly Tamashiro Nobuko stated, “All the U.S. bases in Okinawa should be closed as they threaten the lives and rights of residents, particularly women.” She also expressed her opposition to the planned deployment of the Osprey aircraft to the prefecture.
“Such incidents will happen again as long as the U.S. bases are here. Removing all the bases from Okinawa is the only way to prevent these crimes from happening,” said Itokazu Keiko, the Okinawa Social Mass Party member of the House of Councilors.
Prefectural assemblywoman Karimata Nobuko of the Social Democratic Party argued, “No more women should suffer from sexual assaults by U.S. marines. Let’s work together to get the U.S. Forces out of Okinawa!”