Naha, Okinawa Pref., July 11 (Jiji Press) — The Okinawa Prefectural Assembly approved on Thursday a bill for the prefecture to launch an appeals lawsuit against the Japanese government over landfill work for a planned U.S. base.
The suit will call for the reversal of land minister Keiichi Ishii’s decision to suspend the prefecture’s cancellation of its initial approval for the landfill work necessary for the base relocation and claims that the decision is illegal.
The central government plans to relocate the U.S. Marine Corps’ Futenma Air Station in the city of Ginowan in Okinawa to the Henoko coastal area in Nago, another city in the southernmost Japan prefecture.
The bill was approved at a plenary session by a majority vote from the Social Democratic Party, the Japanese Communist Party and other ruling parties in the assembly.
The prefectural government plans to file the appeal with Naha District Court later in July at the earliest.
The lawsuit, which is based on the Administrative Case Litigation Act, will be the seventh suit between the prefectural and central governments over the Futenma base relocation.
In April, the prefectural government brought the case before a third-party panel under the internal affairs ministry, claiming that Ishii’s decision was illegal.
The Central and Local Government Dispute Management Council, however, dismissed the claims in June, saying the case was not subject to its examination.
Dissatisfied with the council’s dismissal, the prefectural government is considering filing another lawsuit based on the Local Autonomy Law with the Naha branch of Fukuoka High Court, separately from the appeals suit.