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SECURITY > Okinawa

Okinawa governor lodges protest over parachute training at Kadena

  • January 24, 2019
  • , Okinawa Times, Ryukyu Shimpo
  • JMH Summary

Ryukyu Shimpo and Okinawa Times took up a courtesy call  that the Okinawa Area Coordinator, Lt. Gen. Smith, paid on Okinawa Governor Tamaki on Wednesday. The governor reportedly criticized the heavy U.S. military presence in the island prefecture by saying: “Okinawa’s patience has already reached its limit.” He took issue with parachute drop drills at Kadena AB, demanding they be canceled on the grounds that the 1996 SACO final report designated the Ie Jima Auxiliary Airfield as the location for such training. Lt. Gen. Smith reportedly stated in reply: “We maintain constant readiness for Japan’s security. Maximum consideration is given to ensuring safety when conducting parachute training and operating aircraft.” According to the dailies, nine U.S. paratroopers conducted training at the installation on Wednesday evening for the first time in 16 months. Local officials and residents are reportedly concerned that the U.S. military will carry out paradrop training at Kadena regularly.  

 

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