LDP prepared to mention U.S. base relocation in election pledges

The ruling Liberal Democratic Party is now considering mentioning the planned relocation of a U.S. military base within Okinawa Prefecture in its campaign pledges for this summer's upper house election.

LDP Secretary General Shigeru Ishiba told a senior official of the party's Okinawa prefectural chapter Tuesday that the pledges may include the plan to relocate the U.S. Marine Corps' Futenma Air Station from the city of Ginowan to the less populated Henoko area.

The campaign pledges are expected to be finalized in mid-June.

In its initial draft of the pledges, the LDP had not mentioned the relocation agreed between the U.S. and Japanese governments, taking into account its Okinawa chapter's call for moving the base out of the prefecture.

Ishiba wants to make sure that there are no contradictory views within the LDP.

But the senior official of the LDP's Okinawa chapter, Moriyuki Teruya, informed Ishiba that Masaaki Asato, who is looking for a House of Councillors seat from Okinawa, has announced that he will seek the U.S. base's move out of the prefecture.

Teruya added that the Okinawa chapter is in the final stages of creating the regional edition of the LDP campaign pledges, based on what the candidate has said.