Japan seeks to invalidate moves to block US base relocation work

Updated: 2015-10-15 09:22


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Okinawa's defense bureau, under the auspices of the Defense Ministry, for its part, said seeking to invalidate the revocation of the permit was required to"stop Onaga's move in order to avoid serious repercussions, such as a delay in removing risks associated with the Futenma air base, as well as the adverse effect on trust between Japan and the United States."

The ongoing impasse has irked the United States, as the central government continues to try and appease its ally by giving its assurances that the relocation and construction of the new base will go ahead as per a previous bilateral agreement between the two countries, but ties between Tokyo and Washington could become further strained over the issue as polls show that Abe has failed to sufficiently explain and gain the support of Onaga and the people of Okinawa of the central government's stance on the base' s relocation despite recent intensive talks on the issue.

Abe, whose popularity plummeted following his forcing of unconstitutional war bills into law recently in a bid to expand the nation's military scope, has said that the building of a new base partly on reclaimed land from the waters of Oura Bay in the coastal Henoko region of Okinawa, remains the only solution for the relocation of the Futenma base.

Tokyo's pledge to Washington to relocate the base within the island, as was reconfirmed during a summit between Abe and US President Barack Obama will, however, be a growing source of concern to the U.S. side, who has said that the base's relocation should ideally be predicated on the acceptance and understanding of the local people of Okinawa.