Japan Wary of Anti-U.S. Base Sentiment after Infection Spike

Society Politics Lifestyle

Tokyo, Jan. 7 (Jiji Press)--The Japanese government is wary of public sentiment increasingly turning against U.S. bases in Japan, as military personnel are believed to have triggered a novel coronavirus resurgence in three prefectures to be placed under pre-emergency measures.

People in Okinawa, Yamaguchi and Hiroshima prefectures live in close proximity to U.S. military bases, and the lax infection prevention measures taken by the U.S. forces are thought to be behind the explosion of cases there.

Japanese Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi called U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Thursday to "strongly urge the bolstering and thorough enforcement of measures, such as introducing restrictions on going out."

Blinken said that he would do what he can, in response to the unprecedented request by a Japanese foreign minister.

The southernmost prefecture of Okinawa hosts over 70 pct of U.S. military facilities in Japan, including Camp Hansen. The Iwakuni base is located in Iwakuni, Yamaguchi Prefecture, western Japan, and Hiroshima Prefecture neighbors the city.

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Jiji Press