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HOME  > Past issues  > 2017 August 9 - 15  > Protests continue across Japan against Osprey flights after fatal crash
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2017 August 9 - 15 [US FORCES]

Protests continue across Japan against Osprey flights after fatal crash

August 13&14, 2017
Protests continue across Japan against the U.S. military flying MV-22 Osprey aircraft even after the recent fatal crash in Australia and the Japanese government for allowing flights in Japan to continue.

The U.S. Marine Corps Futenma Air Station in Okinawa is where Ospreys, including the crashed one, are stationed. Okinawans held rallies and demonstrations over the weekend.

On August 12, 45,000 people from inside and outside Okinawa assembled at an athletic park in the prefecture’s capital city of Naha for a rally organized to support Governor Onaga Takeshi in his effort to achieve the withdrawal of the Osprey deployment, block the Henoko base construction, and remove the U.S. Futenma base.

Onaga pointed to the Osprey crash in Australia early this month and the crash in Nago City at the end of 2016, expressing his strong anger. The governor criticized the Abe government for cancelling its request to the U.S. military for the suspension of Osprey flights only six days after the fatal crash this month. He said, “The national government easily backed down on its own request in response to the U.S. insistence on operational necessity. I have to say Japan’s independence is a myth.”

The rally adopted a special resolution to protest against the Osprey crash.

On August 13 in Ginowan City, the day marking the 13th anniversary of the U.S. military helicopter crash on the campus of Okinawa International University adjoining the Futenma base, a rally demanding the closure of the base took place. Japanese Communist Party member of the House of Representatives Akamine Seiken and several Okinawa-elected parliamentarians joined the rally. After the rally, participants marched in demonstration through the downtown area, shouting in chorus, “Ground defective Ospreys!” “Close down the Futenma base immediately!”

In Hokkaido where the Japan-U.S. joint military training exercises is taking place, peace loving citizens in Kushiro City on August 11 held a demonstration in protest against the Abe government accepting the resumption of Osprey flights soon after the fatal accident.

Past related articles:
> Latest crash verifies there is no place for defective US Osprey in Japan [ August 7, 2017]
> Okinawa presses state gov’t to halt Osprey flights [ August 8, 2017]
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