Nearly 4,000 protest at Henoko on Saturday
According to organizers, about 3,900 people took part in a protest rally at a beach in Sedate, Henoko, Nago City, Saturday, demanding a halt to the seabed drilling survey at the planned relocation site for the MCAS Futenma.
A number of protesters, including Okinawan Diet members, went on boats near the platforms on the ocean, from which the drilling survey is taking place. As the boats neared the off-limits area that is marked with buoys, officers on Japan Coast Guard boats that constantly patrol the area warned the protesters to stay away or they would be the subject to a forced expulsion.
On land, protesters chanted slogans opposing the construction work. Nago Mayor Susumu Inamine who was taking part to the protest delivered a speech, in which he criticized the national government’s hard-line stance on the issue. “There is no justified reason for the government to act as it does,” Inamine said.