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Japan: Candidates Who Support U.S. Base Move Win

Stars and Stripes Okinawa reports that “mayors committed to U.S. military base realignment plans in Okinawa and Iwakuni each won re-election this past weekend, giving the Japanese government a political boost against those opposed to the moves.”  

“Atsushi Sakima defeated Keiichiro Shimura on Sunday to remain mayor of Ginowan City, home of Marine Corps Air Station Futenma in Okinawa.”  

“The U.S. and Japan have agreed to close Futenma, which is in a densely populated part of the island and garnered protest after a helicopter crashed into a nearby college building in 2004. However, the plan to move Futenma’s functions to Camp Schwab, in the island’s rural east, galvanized opposition that resulted in Okinawa Gov. Takeshi Onaga’s landslide victory in 2014.”

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