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HOME  > Past issues  > 2023 May 10 - 16  > Antiwar event held in Tokyo in solidarity with Okinawans
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2023 May 10 - 16 [PEACE]

Antiwar event held in Tokyo in solidarity with Okinawans

May 16, 2023
The Japan Peace Committee held an antiwar event in Tokyo in solidarity with Okinawans on May 15, the day commemorating the 51st anniversary of Okinawa's reversion to Japan.

Chisaka Jun of the peace committee pointed out, "When Okinawa was returned to Japan, Okinawans hoped for a peaceful Okinawa without military bases. However, enormous U.S. bases still exist there and even the project to construct a new U.S. base has been underway. In addition, the government has increased the presence of the Self-Defense Forces around the Nansei Islands, a chain of islands including Okinawa."

He criticized the Japanese government for intending to make Okinawa a "pawn sacrifice" again in a possible war, adding that the government should maintain peaceful foreign policies based on the postwar Constitution, not take the path toward the expansion of its military power.

Hayashi Ryujiro who works to have the Japan-U.S. military alliance abrogated said, "While many people are struggling with rising prices, the government is planning to use taxpayer money for a new U.S. base being constructed in Okinawa's Henoko district. The new base is projected to cost more than two trillion yen to complete."

Regarding the government plan to use earth and sand containing the remains of Okinawans who were killed in the Okinawa Battle during WWII for the Henoko reclamation work, Hayashi said, "It's intolerable to reclaim land for the military base with sand containing human remains."

Event participants called on passersby to sign an "All Okinawa" petition opposing the Henoko base project. Signing the petition, a woman said, "I don't want Okinawa's beautiful sea to be reclaimed and polluted."

Past related articles:
> Use of Shimoji-jima airport by USFJ will break 1971 Tokyo-Okinawa rule [February 9, 2023]
> 107 local assemblies object to use of sand that includes remains of the war dead for US base project in Okinawa [October 28, 2021]
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