Minister Eto of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries “urged” Okinawa Prefectural government to grant a permission to the Defense Bureau for transplanting corals. The due date was set to be February 10; however, Okinawa Prefectural governement turned down the urging on the ground that the court is still in process to decide legality of the landfill.
The corals in question are 39,590 colonies growing in the Oura Bay. Okinawa Defense Bureau requested for a permit for transplantng in last April and also in last July to Okinawa Prefectural government, but the requests were turned down. This time, trying to intimidate the Prefectural government, the central government used a stronger word, “urge”.
It is possible to transplant up to 100 colonies per day. Given that approximately 40,000 colonies grow in the Bay, it will take at least one year to complete transplanting. For the central government that wants to proceed on the construction, “transplanting coral colonies” is a big hurdle to conquer, while for Governor Tamaki Denny who refuses the new base construction, it is a strong defense weapon. No matter what comes, transplanting coral colonies should not be permitted.
(In front of the Camp Schwab Gate)
Approximately 15 people resumed the sit-in rally first in the morning, singing songs and raising voices to the base, “Do not destroy the sea of hope!” In the afternoon, one of the participants gave away chocholates and pamphlets for celebrating the Valentine’s Day to the ordinary drivers who were getting irritable in the mid of the traffic jam near the gates. The pamphlet apologized for causing a traffic jam and stated the reasons to oppose the new base construction. A closing sentence of the pamphlet reads. “We want to pass a baton of peace to our children.”
(In front of Ryukyu Cement Awa Pier)
Approximately 20 protestors rallied towards dump trucks at the entrance of the Pier. The trucks come in through two gates, which gives no time for the protestors to take a break. Five riot policemen assigned to the site were also busy to remove the protestors. At the exit gate, 5 protestors shouted against the trucks, “Do not kill the sea!” Such protest scene went on till after 5pm. 781 truckloads of earth and sand were loaded onto the cargo ships, and 3 ships departed.
The canoe team with 6 canoes went out on the sea in high waves and succeeded in delaying the departure of one ship for about one hour.
(In front of Shiokawa pier at Motobu Town)
Approximately10 protestors kept on standing in front of the trucks to “delay as long as possible, even for a second or a minute” the delivery of earth/soil. One employee of a security guard company under a contract with the Defense Bureau said to us, “You are engaged in a terrorism!”
Our response was, “It is not reasonable to proceed on the construction while a court dispute between the central government and the Prefectural government regarding the construction is not settled yet. At least, we should wait untill the court judgement is given, shouldn’t we?”
Due to the delay, they are getting more irritable day by day.
436 truckloads were loaded to the ships.
Total number of dump trucks to date and percentage against the total
The weight and the volume of earth/soil were estimated per experts’ advice
Number of dump trucks which made delivery from December 2018 to the end of December 2019 114,601(1.68%)
|Number of dump trucks
|Weightt of earth/sand
|Converted to volume
|Volume per Total