Anti-U.S. Base Ruling Camp Keeps Majority in Okinawa Poll

Politics

Naha, Okinawa Pref., June 7 (Jiji Press)--The ruling bloc supporting Okinawa Governor Denny Tamaki, who is against a controversial plan to relocate a U.S. military base within the southernmost Japan prefecture, maintained its majority in Sunday's prefectural assembly election.

With the victory, Tamaki is poised to continue seeking to block the plan to move the U.S. Marine Corps' Futenma air base in Ginowan, a densely populated city in Okinawa, to the Henoko coastal area in Nago, also Okinawa, demanding the base be moved out of the prefecture. The relocation plan is based on a Japan-U.S. agreement.

Of the 48 seats in the assembly, 25 were won by the ruling bloc, including the Social Democratic Party and the Japanese Communist Party, down by one from the preelection strength, while 21 went to the opposition camp, including Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's Liberal Democratic Party. The so-called neutral camp secured two seats.

The LDP added seats but failed to secure a majority together with Komeito and conservative independents.

"We could receive a certain appreciation from the people of Okinawa," Tamaki said to reporters after the election results came out. "My anti-relocation position remains unchanged."

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press