Kenmin Taikai, Okinawans Surprise Government With Overwhelming Turnout To Protest Bases

This Sunday, November 8th, Okinawans showed their opposition by surprising the government with over 21,000 citizens gathering at Ginowan to protest the Henoko plans, as well as show their dissatisfaction at the way the Futenma Base resolution is being handled.  The expected crowd was 3000.  Mayor Iha of Ginowan said that the closing of Futenma should not mean that the dangers and burden from Futenma be transferred over to the people of Henoko.  Currently, the government has been trying to pit Okinawans against each other by saying that the Henoko residents are being selfish in not relieving the dangers of Futenma and allowing the airstrip to be built offshore at the mouth of Oura bay.  The waters there are home for endagered and indigenous sealife, including the Okinawan manatee.  The residents of Henoko and Oura depend on the sea for their livelihood by gathering muzuku seaweed, fish, and shellfish.  Organizers to the event considered this a success and hope that it will send a message to US President Obama’s visit this month.  In the meantime, Okinawans are upset and have criticized Okinawa Governor Nakaima’s absence and trip abroad to the US during this event.  Nakaima will be arriving in Hawaii on Sunday for a few days.

Over 21,000 strong turn out for rally against US base expansion
Over 21,000 strong turn out for rally against US base expansion

2 thoughts on “Kenmin Taikai, Okinawans Surprise Government With Overwhelming Turnout To Protest Bases

  1. jamie Oshiro

    This is a criticle time for Okinawa.
    I would like to encourage everyone to please take the time now to send emails, letters to both US,Japan, OKinawa govt officials to show support to closing Futenma, no base relocation to Henoko, protecting Okinwas dugong and above all bringing justice, equal rights and peace to Okinawa.
    Its long overdue. Letters influence decisions together
    we can make a difference, non action inspires just that nothing…please take time for positive action and send your prayers for a peaceful Okinawa.

    google for email address obama, gates, hatoyama, nakaima,
    mayor iha

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