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HOME  > Past issues  > 2016 December 7 - 13  > Hibakusha encourage Okinawans protesting against US base construction
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2016 December 7 - 13 [POLITICS]

Hibakusha encourage Okinawans protesting against US base construction

December 6-8, 2016
Members of the Japan Confederation of A- and H-Bomb Sufferers Organizations (Nihon Hidankyo) on December 7 visited Okinawa’s Henoko district to encourage local people staging a sit-in protest against the construction of a U.S. military base.

As a project to commemorate the 60th anniversary of its foundation, Hidankyo is making a tour to show solidarity with Okinawans suffering substantial damage caused by the many U.S. bases in Okinawa.

The delegation visited a tent site on the Henoko beach where sit-in protesters were gathering. Hidankyo Secretary General Tanaka Terumi handed them collected donations and a banner reading, “For Okinawa and Japan free from US bases and nuclear weapons” and “No More Hibakusha, No More War”.

One of the local activists, Tanaka Hiroyuki, expressed his gratitude for the delegation’s visit. He said, “The U.S. bases have remained in Okinawa for 71 years since the end of World War II. They have functioned as footholds to send troops to fight on foreign soil such as the Korean Peninsula, Vietnam, and Iraq. It’s absolutely unacceptable to build another U.S. military facility here using Japanese taxpayers’ money. We’ll continue to fight to put a halt to the construction.”

On that day, those visitors observed from close proximity the U.S. Marine Corps Futenma Air Station in Ginowan City where crash-prone aircraft Ospreys are deployed. On December 5 and 6, they talked with A-bomb victims living in Okinawa and local residents who survived the bloody ground battle in the last days of WWII.

Past related article:
> Nihon Hidankyo holds ceremony to celebrate 60th anniversary [August 9, 2016]
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