Okinawa Governor balks at attending Tokyo ceremony
An unhappy Okinawa Governor Hirokazu Nakaima is showing his unwillingness to attend a Japanese government-sponsored ceremony to mark the 61st anniversary of the country’s restoration of its sovereignty after its defeat in World War II.
Answering questions from reporters in Tokyo, Nakaima said that he has found it difficult to attend the event because it’s being treated as a celebration. “I don’t feel like (attending the ceremony) wholeheartedly,” he said of the ceremony slated for April 28th in Tokyo marking the anniversary of the entry into force of the San Francisco Peace Treaty in 1952. Nakaima said that when the treaty became effective, “Okinawa was discarded, placed under U.S. forces’ administration and forced to undergo hard times.”
Nakaima’s remarks came after a meeting of officials from the central and Okinawa prefectural governments earlier in the day. During that conference, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said that the history of hardship in which Okinawa, Amami and Ogasawara, all southern Japan, were kept out of Japan’s administrative control even after the treaty came into effect should not be forgotten in holding the ceremony.
Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said at a press conference that the central government will continue sending messages in order to get people in Okinawa to understand that it is giving due consideration to them.