Thursday evening’s Nikkei and Tokyo Shimbun ran a Kyodo story about remarks made by PACOM Commander Harris at a congressional hearing on Wednesday, during which he expressed the view that the transfer of the bulk of 4,000 of the 19,000 Marines stationed in Okinawa to Guam will take place during the period from 2024 to 2028. The U.S. and Japan agreed in 2013 to start moving Marines from Okinawa to Guam in the first half of the 2020s, and ongoing preparations for the transfer, including the construction of a firing range and other facilities at a U.S. base there, are being partially funded by Japan. Admiral Harris said last year that the Futenma base will be relocated to Henoko probably in 2025 and that Okinawa Marines will be transferred to Guam after the completion of Futenma relocation. The PACOM commander also stated at the hearing on Wednesday that the U.S. military hopes to reduce the number of Marines in Okinawa ultimately to around 10,000 or 11,000. The papers interpreted this remark as an intention to reduce the base-hosting burden on Okinawa.