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SECURITY > Okinawa

Ginowan mayor plans to visit U.S. in May

  • April 6, 2019
  • , Okinawa Times, Ryukyu Shimpo
  • JMH Summary

Ryukyu Shimpo wrote that Ginowan Mayor Matsukawa is making arrangements to visit the United States in May or later. The paper speculated that the mayor is hoping to hold talks with Defense Department and U.S. military officials as well as U.S. lawmakers in Washington to seek their cooperation in returning the Futenma base as soon as possible and reducing the base-hosting burden on the municipality. This will be Matsukawa’s first trip to the United States as the mayor of Ginowan. The paper noted that former Mayor Sakima visited the United States in April 2016, October 2017, and May 2018. Okinawa Times ran a similar report, saying the mayor is making arrangements through MOFA to meet with senior USG officials and members of Congress after the Golden Week holidays from late April through early May. Matsukawa reportedly told the paper that he would like to explain to the U.S. side that the city’s policy of seeking the early closure and return of the Futenma base will not change regardless of who the mayor is and that he is hoping to hear the candid views of the United States regarding the future of MCAS Futenma.

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