July 1 (Mon): Five-Year-Old Construction Work Has Completed Less Than 4% of the Planned Landfill Area / Protest Rally Held at 5 Locations

(In Front of the Gate)
Hot weather is in now. From 9:00 a.m. 45 people including 20 members of General Construction Workers’ Union of Tokyo resumed the sit-in. The sun was so strong that sitting alone could bring on sweat. The riot police force members dressed in long sleeve uniform mechanically removed the citizens. They must be suffering from the heat, too.
“Stop the illegal construction!”
“Don’t dump earth and sand into the sea!”
We repeatedly called out aloud, but were removed within 30 minutes. Three times in the day, 142 truckloads in total were delivered.


(On the Sea in Oura Bay)
Two boats went out on the sea to the construction site. The work was in progress in the morning, but it was not confirmed if earth and sand were unloaded from the cargo ships.
Five years have passed since the Defense Bureau launched on the construction of the base. Although the landfill work has been in progress, the schedule to complete in 5 years has gone amiss because of the citizens’ protest, and only less than 4% of the planned landfill area is completed. Furthermore, the original construction plan has been changed without an approval of Okinawa Prefectural Government, and landfill of Henoko side of which water is shallow has been given priority over other areas. However, the existence of a patch of soft sea floor was recently revealed, which will henceforward force a big change to the construction method. Any change to the original plan requires an approval by the Governor, and the approval is hard to come by. Insistent protest is the best way to let the people of Japan and the world to know the will of the Okinawan.

(In Front of Ryukyu Cement Pier in Awa)
Standing against the consistent flow of dump trucks to deliver earth and sand to the Pier, 30 protesters kept on rallying. The strong sun and exhaust gas could make you dizzy, but the protestors took turns to stood firmly in front
of the Gate to show their strong opposition to the dump trucks and ordinary cars passing by.
In the afternoon, having learned that loading earth and sand at Shiokawa Pier began, five of us immediately went there to protest. Guard men from a private security firm lined up nicely to prevent the protesting citizens from coming closer. Even in such environment, some protestors stood with their arms spread in front of dump trucks.
To Awa and Shiokawa, 828 truckloads of earth and sand in total were delivered, and 4 cargo ships left for Oura Bay.
Cicadas were singing aloud, and summer flowers were in full bloom.


Construction work on the access road to a helipad at Takae of Agarison Village was resumed. It was temporarily stopped not to disturb nesting activities of Noguchigera bird that is designated as a natural treasury of Japan. However, 7 vehicles including heavy duty construction machines and trucks went inside the base. Ms. Isa Ikuko, a resident of Takae said.
“I will continue to protest in order to protect my life.”
The picture shows a helipad built for US forces in the mid of Takae forest 2 years ago.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.