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People's Daily Online

Okinawa Parliament Passes Resolution Demanding Withdrawal of U.S. Marines

People's Daily Online

(Xinhua) 19:40, May 26, 2016

The Okinawa prefectural parliament passed a resolution Thursday, protesting against the murder of a 20-year-old local woman by a U.S. military-affiliated civilian and demanding the withdrawal of U.S. Marines from the southernmost island prefecture.

The resolution, together with a statement issued by the parliament, also required a thorough revision of the Japan-U.S. Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) which defines the legal status of U.S. base personnel in Japan, abandonment of the plan to relocate Marine Corps Air Station Futenma base within the prefecture and scaling down of the U.S. bases.

The resolution and the statement were submitted by the Japanese Communist Party and the Social Democratic Party that control the Okinawa parliament, and won support from the Okinawa branch of the Komeito party.

The opposition Liberal Democratic Party was absent when the resolution and the statement were put to vote in the prefectural parliament.

Many municipal parliaments in Okinawa have passed similar protest resolutions, demanding the Japanese and U.S. governments to come up with fundamental measures to prevent local residents in Okinawa from being hurt again by the U.S. army.

A 20-year-old woman was raped and strangled by a former U.S. Marine last month. The body was dumped in a forested area.

Okinawa hosts some 75 percent of U.S. bases in Japan. Criminal cases involving U.S. military men repeatedly happened in Okinawa. In March, a U.S. Navy sailor was arrested after raping a woman in a hotel in Naha City, the capital of Okinawa.

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