Tokyo: Governor of Japan’s Okinawa prefecture Denny Tamaki has requested a detailed explanation from the government in Tokyo on its plan to strengthen defence forces in the southwest region, which was mentioned in the updated security documents.
The Governor made the request when submitting a petition to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Xinhua news agency quoted local media as saying.
Tamaki met State Minister for Foreign Affairs Kenji Yamada and handed over the petition, asking the government to immediately elaborate on the development process of the new security documents, its impact on local areas, and the changes it might bring to the residents of Okinawa, Kyodo News reported.
Last December, the Japanese government approved three updated documents on its security and defence policies, namely the new National Security Strategy, the National Defence Strategy and the Defence Buildup Program.
The documents all mentioned strengthening Japan’s Self-Defence Forces in Okinawa with greater access to local airfields and ports.
Analysts here said the release of the documents marks a fundamental shift in Japan’s post-war security ideology and defence policy, in complete violation of its exclusively defence-oriented policy and pacifism embodied in the Constitution of Japan.
Such a major policy shift lacked parliament discussion or any explanation to Okinawa residents who will be most affected, experts noted.
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