Japan Govt Resumes Base Relocation Work in Okinawa

Politics

Nago, Okinawa Pref., Nov. 1 (Jiji Press)--Amid strong local opposition, the Japanese government resumed on Thursday work related to landfilling in the Henoko coastal district in the city of Nago, Okinawa Prefecture, for the relocation of a key U.S. base within the southernmost Japan prefecture.

The state took the move after land minister Keiichi Ishii decided Tuesday to suspend the Okinawa prefectural government's cancellation of its approval for the reclamation work.

It aims to start earth-filling work in Henoko by year-end, sources familiar with the situation said.

The Okinawa side, including its governor, Denny Tamaki, claims that the Futenma base relocation within the prefecture runs counter to the will of local residents. The battle between the central and local governments over the base relocation looks certain to become severe again, critics said.

The Japanese government plans to build a new facility in Henoko to take over the functions of the U.S. Marine Corps' Futenma air station, now in a congested area in the Okinawa city of Ginowan.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press