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U.S. commander says no to leaving Okinawa base without new facility

The top commander of U.S. military forces stationed in Japan's Okinawa on Thursday ruled out the Marine Corps leaving a controversial air base before a relocation facility is ready. "The answer is no," Lt. Gen. John Wissler told an event in Washington, when asked whether the Marines could suspend use of the Futenma Air Station and move to an existing base elsewhere before a relocation facility is complete in the island prefecture.

U.S. drones to be temporarily deployed at Misawa base again next year

U.S. Global Hawk surveillance drones deployed in Guam will be temporarily moved to the Misawa Air Base in northeastern Japan again next year and later, a senior Defense Ministry official said Wednesday. In January, the U.S. forces in Japan notified Tokyo of its plan to deploy a pair of the unmanned reconnaissance aircraft to the U.S. Misawa base in Aomori Prefecture from around May to around October this year.

Japan, U.S. eye joint medical research facility in Okinawa

The Japanese government said Tuesday it is discussing with the United States setting up a research facility for new medicines in Okinawa Prefecture at a tract of land to be returned by the U.S. military in line with a base relocation plan. Relevant government offices "have been considering in collaboration," Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told a press conference.

Japan, U.S. eye joint medical research facility in Okinawa

The Japanese government said Tuesday it is discussing with the United States setting up a research facility for new medicines in Okinawa Prefecture at a tract of land to be returned by the U.S. military in line with a base relocation plan. Relevant government offices "have been considering in collaboration," Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told a press conference.

Tokyo dismisses fresh setback in bid to relocate US air base

Japan said Monday it was sticking with plans to relocate a controversial US military base in Okinawa, despite the election of a local politician strongly opposed to the move. Susumu Inamine was reelected mayor at this weekend's polls in Nago on the east coast of Okinawa, where the base is to be moved. His victory marked a fresh setback for long-stalled efforts by Tokyo and Washington to relocate the Marines' Futenma Air Station, more than 17 years after the move was first agreed.

New setback in Japan's bid to relocate US air base

Efforts to relocate a US base on Japan's Okinawa appeared to suffer a new setback Sunday, 17 years after they began, with the reported electoral victory of an opponent of the project. The mayor of the town of Nago on the east coast of Okinawa has won re-election, according to the TBS news station after the majority of votes were counted. Susumu Inamine, supported by several leftist parties, is a strong opponent of the joint project by the US and Japanese governments to move the US Marines' Futenma Air Station, sited in an urban area in the south of Okinawa, to Nago bay.

U.S. welcomes Okinawa governor's decision on Marine base relocation

U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel on Friday welcomed the approval by the governor of Japan's Okinawa Prefecture of landfill work for the relocation of a U.S. Marine Corps air base within the island prefecture. "It is the most significant milestone achieved in these realignment efforts so far," Hagel said in a statement, referring to a plan to move the Futenma Air Station to a facility off the Henoko coastal area of Nago from a densely populated area in Ginowan.

U.S. welcomes Okinawa governor's decision on Marine base relocation

U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel on Friday welcomed the approval by the governor of Japan's Okinawa Prefecture of landfill work for the relocation of a U.S. Marine Corps air base within the island prefecture. "It is the most significant milestone achieved in these realignment efforts so far," Hagel said in a statement, referring to a plan to move the Futenma Air Station to a facility off the Henoko coastal area of Nago from a densely populated area in Ginowan.

Japan gets Okinawa approval for U.S. Marine base move

By Kiyoshi Takenaka TOKYO (Reuters) - The governor of Japan's Okinawa on Friday approved a controversial plan to relocate a U.S. air base to a less populous part of the southern island, but said he would keep pressing to move the base off the island altogether. The nod from Okinawa, long a reluctant host to the bulk of U.S. military forces in Japan, is an achievement for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who has promised a more robust military and tighter security ties with the United States amid escalating tension with China.

Okinawa seen closer to approving landfill for U.S. base relocation

The governor of Okinawa Prefecture is almost set to approve Friday a central government request for landfill work to relocate a key U.S. military base within the island prefecture, sources close to the matter said Wednesday. The decision by Gov. Hirokazu Nakaima, which became highly likely after he met with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe earlier in the day, would mark a major breakthrough in Japan-U.S. efforts to follow through on their 1996 agreement on the relocation after years of political maneuvering amid stiff local opposition in Okinawa.
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