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Appeal - US bases out of Okinawa!

11 July 2000

International Appeal on the U.S. Bases in Okinawa on the occasion of the G8 Summit Meeting, Okinawa, Japan, 21-22 July, 2000

Kia ora,

To take part in this email petition copy the details below and paste them into a new email message. Fill in your details in the section at the end and send the message to the Japan Peace Committee at

To - Hiroshi Suda, General Secretary, Japan Peace Committee

International Appeal on the U.S. Bases in Okinawa on the occasion of the G8 Summit Meeting, Okinawa, Japan, 21-22 July, 2000

We draw your attention to the fact that the coming G8 Summit Meeting (21-23 July) will be held in Okinawa. This small group of islands, like a colony, is burdened with U.S. military bases, as has never been seen in the territory of other sovereign states in the world.

There are huge U.S. bases in Okinawa which occupy more than 10% of the whole territory (20% of the main island). These bases were built in violation of international law.

The US Military forces, occupying Okinawa in the Second World War, built their bases by force, sending surviving citizens to concentration camps and taking their land without payment. It was a clear violation of The Hague Convention which prohibits the confiscation of private property even during war, and that obliges nations to pay for the property requisitioned even in the case of military necessity.

Furthermore, since 1953, they have been bulldozing houses and burning them, as they did in the land just after the end of WWII. Thus huge U.S. military bases were built as we see now.

Today these bases are a violation of human rights and of the security of Okinawan people.

According to the statistics of the Japanese Government as well as of Okinawa prefecture, a number of crimes committed by U.S. soldiers for these 30 years has reached around 5,000, and more than 10% of them are violent crimes such as murder, burglaries, and rapes. However, neither Japan's domestic laws nor U.S. laws are applied to the U.S. Forces in Japan, and in fact, U.S. soldiers committing crimes are protected by prerogatives. More than 37% of Okinawa's population is disturbed by the noise pollution of U.S. bases. The crashes and the burning of military airplanes often takes place.

It is clear that the above described situation infringes on a norm of international community envisaged in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights: "Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person" (Article 3).

At the same time, it is quite serious that these bases constitute a threat to the peace of Asia and of the world.

Okinawa is the only place in the world where the U.S. deploys the Marine Corps outside its territory. The Marine Corps, situated in front of the Korean Peninsula and China, are forces with a task of advance attack to other nations. Thus Okinawa is made an important stronghold of the U.S. Forces in Asia and the Pacific.

Moreover the US administration is reinforcing its military bases in Okinawa based on the military strategy of pre-emptive attack and of interference, as it plans to build a modern base on the beautiful seashore of Nago City, the venue of the G8 Summit Meeting.

It is obvious that such a situation infringes on the principles of the United Nations, such as peaceful solution of conflicts, respect to sovereignty, non-interference into internal affairs, and so on, and that it goes against the current of peace in Asia and the world.

The nations of G8 declared that they share common 'value' of democracy, human rights, and peace. Okinawa, where they are coming together, is a spot where these values are violently trampled upon. At this last G8 Summit Meeting in the 20th century which is being held in Okinawa, both governments of Japan and the United States should immediately start actions for the reduction and removal of U.S. bases in order to normalize the situation in Okinawa.

The Okinawan people have been fighting against the burden of U.S. military bases and for their removal. It is high time, on the eve of the 21st century, that their demand should be mmediately realized. We support the demands of Okinawan people and express our cordial solidarity with them.

We, the undersigned, support this appeal:

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