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HOME  > Past issues  > 2021 May 26 - June 1  > JCP Akamine, regarding land-restriction bill, demands holding of hearings of residents living near bases
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2021 May 26 - June 1 [POLITICS]

JCP Akamine, regarding land-restriction bill, demands holding of hearings of residents living near bases

May 27, 2021
Japanese Communist Party member of the House of Representatives Akamine Seiken at a Lower House committee meeting on May 26 demanded that hearings be held in the Diet to hear local opinions in connection with a law to restrict the use of land in the vicinity of military facilities and on isolated islands.

Akamine noted that the bill, if enacted, will surveil people living or owning land near bases, and that many of these people have been suffering various problems caused by the military bases on a daily basis such as accidents involving military aircraft, aircraft noise pollution associated with late night/early morning flights, and environmental contamination.

Akamine, touching on Okinawa's postwar history, said that Okinawans' land under U.S. military occupation had been seized by the U.S. occupation force, and that many Okinawans had therefore had no choice but to live near the bases. Akamine criticized an expert panel of the government on the bill for failing to include historians.

The government says that sit-in demonstrations against the construction of a new U.S. base at Henoko in Okinawa's Nago City may constitute "an act that obstructs base functions".

Regarding this government view, Akamine said, "Okinawans have repeatedly shown their opposition to the new base in elections as well as in plebiscites. I cannot accept the bill as it denies local autonomy and puts local people under surveillance."

Past related articles:
> Diet debate started on bill to surveil residents living in vicinity of bases [May 12, 2021]
> JCP Koike: Submission of bill that opens path to enable crackdown on antinuclear and anti-base movements unacceptable [March 9, 2021]

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