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SECURITY > Okinawa

Okinawa rejects GOJ request for design changes to Henoko project

  • May 17, 2022
  • , Okinawa Times, Ryukyu Shimpo
  • JMH Translation

Okinawa Times and Ryukyu Shimpo wrote that the Okinawa Prefectural Government told the GOJ on Monday that it has no intention to accept the land minister’s order to approve design changes for the FRF construction at Henoko. On April 28, Land Minister Saito issued the legally binding instruction to the prefectural government to approve the design changes for the land reclamation at Henoko to address the soft seabed there and set a May 16 deadline for a response. The Defense Ministry’s Okinawa Bureau submitted to the prefectural government a request for design changes in April 2020, and the prefectural government rejected it in November 2021. The defense bureau asked the land minister in December 2021 based on the Administrative Appeal Law to revoke the local government’s rejection of its request, and the minister decided on April 8 this year to revoke Okinawa’s decision. The prefectural government also told the central government that it is planning to ask the Central and Local Government Dispute Management Council, which considers the legality of the central government’s involvement in local issues, to examine whether the land minister’s instruction was legal. Noting that since the council needs to make a decision within 90 days of receiving an appeal, it will likely reach a decision on Okinawa’s appeal by the end of August, Ryukyu Shimpo speculated that this may affect local races in the Upper House election in July and the gubernatorial election on September 11.

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