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SECURITY > Okinawa

Okinawa lodges protest against jettisoning of fuel tanks

  • June 30, 2022
  • , Okinawa Times
  • JMH Summary

Okinawa Times reported that Masahito Tamari, director general for military base affairs of the Okinawa Prefectural Government, visited the U.S. Consulate General in Naha on Wednesday to protest the jettisoning of fuel tanks by a U.S. Navy FA-18 off the coast of Okinawa and the landing of Ospreys at the Naha Port Facility. Concerning the jettisoning of fuel tanks, Tamari reportedly told U.S. Consul General Dolbow: “It was extremely regrettable that the local authorities were not notified of the incident, despite the possibility of damage to fishing boats and other vessels.”  CG Dolbow reportedly responded: “It is regrettable that the incident has caused anxiety among residents of the prefecture.” The paper wrote that according to Tamari, CG Dolbow stressed: “U.S. military operations place the highest priority on safety and at the same time the U.S. military must defend Japan, including Okinawa.” As for the lack of notification to the Japanese side, the U.S. consul general reportedly said: “I believe we are following military standards, but I would like to confirm this.” Regarding the landing of Ospreys at the Naha Port Facility, Dolbow reportedly said: “It is a normal operation for them to land and be transported by ship.” The daily said Tamari rebutted the explanation,  saying that this kind of operation has not been carried out in the last 50 years and it is “absolutely unacceptable” as it leads to an increase in the base-hosting burden. According to the paper, Tamari also called for the prevention of a recurrence and thorough safety checks regarding the unscheduled landing of a CH-53 near Cape Hendo in Kunigami Village.

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