Okinawa to Block Base Transfer by Rejecting Plan Changes: Governor

Politics

Tokyo, Nov. 9 (Jiji Press)--Denny Tamaki, governor of Okinawa Prefecture, suggested Friday that he will not approve any central government applications for modifications to the construction plan related to the relocation of a key U.S. base within the southernmost Japan prefecture.

"Permission by the governor must be sought (under law) every time modification to the plan is to be made," Tamaki told a press conference at the Foreign Correspondents' Club of Japan in Tokyo. "The construction work will stop on every such occasion," he also said.

The Japanese government is proceeding with the relocation of the U.S. Marine Corps' Futenma air station in Ginowan, Okinawa, to the Henoko coastal district in Nago, another city in Okinawa.

Modification to the work to build a new base taking over the Futenma base's functions is expected to become necessary as weak ground has been found in the Henoko district.

Tamaki said, "I don't know how long it will take" to complete the construction work if he uses his authority as governor. "The work should be stopped now," he said, calling on the central government to give up the relocation plan.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press