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HOME  > Past issues  > 2012 August 1 - 14  > Okinawan university damaged by US military plane crash opposes Osprey deployment
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2012 August 1 - 14 [OKINAWA]

Okinawan university damaged by US military plane crash opposes Osprey deployment

August 14, 2012
Amid widespread public anger against the Osprey deployment to the U.S. Futenma base and the planned nationwide low-altitude flight training exercises to be conducted by the aircraft, a university in Okinawa’s Ginowan City on August 13 held a rally to commemorate a U.S. military helicopter crash on a university building 8 years ago.

On August 13, 2004, a large CH-53D transport helicopter based at the U.S. Marine Corps Futenma Air Station crashed on the campus of Okinawa International University which is located next to the base. Helicopter fragments hit local residents’ houses but fortunately there were no casualties. Just after the crash, U.S. soldiers in the Futenma base sealed off the crash site and blocked not only university officials but also police officers and fire fighters from entering.

At the rally, University President Oshiro Tamotsu called for an immediate stop of flights by U.S. military aircraft using the Futenma base and expressed strong opposition to the Osprey deployment.

A female student said, “In my hometown, Kadena, at every school from kindergarten to junior high school, emergency evacuation drills as preparation for U.S. military plane crashes are conducted.”

Another student said, “Is it OK for Japanese people’s lives to be endangered for the sake of the Japan-U.S. security treaty?”
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