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HOME  > Past issues  > 2014 July 23 - 29  > Gov’t plans to move US MV-22s out of Okinawa to help Governor Nakaima be reelected
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2014 July 23 - 29 [POLITICS]

Gov’t plans to move US MV-22s out of Okinawa to help Governor Nakaima be reelected

July 24, 2014
The Abe government has announced a plan to temporarily deploy Osprey aircraft from the U.S. Futenma base (Okinawa Pref.) to a civilian airport in Saga Prefecture in order to help the incumbent Okinawa governor win the November election, Akahata reported on July 24.

In December last year, pushed by the Abe government, Okinawa Governor Nakaima Hirokazu abandoned his position that the Futenma base should be moved out of Okinawa. He accepted the construction of a new U.S. base in the Henoko District in the prefecture under the condition that the U.S. Forces stop using the Futenma base within five years.

In order to fulfill Nakaima’s request, the state needs to move most of the U.S. military aircraft in the base away by FY 2019.

According to the plan the Defense Ministry issued, the state will build aprons for military aircraft at Saga Airport by 2018 and will also deploy aircraft of the Self-Defense Forces there in 2019. At the same time, the U.S. Ospreys will be moved to Saga Airport from the Futenma base.

It is obvious that the government considers the announcement of the latest plan a benefit to Nakaima in his election campaign.
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