Urasoe mayor explains decision to accept military port
Urasoe City Mayor Tetsuji Matsumoto held a press meeting at the City Hall on Monday,and made official his decision to accept the transfer of the Naha Military Port to Urasoe City.
Matsumoto thus withdrew his pledge he had made during his election campaign opposing the port. Matsumoto explained that, after carefully considering the plan, he decided to follow the SACO agreement that was negotiated by the Japan-U.S. Special Action Committee on Okinawa, in 1996. He said that he had consulted Naha City Mayor about his thoughts.
Matsumoto said that he would explain his new stance to the national government, the Okinawa Prefectural Government and Naha City officials at a meeting about the relocation of the Naha Military Port scheduled for Apr. 28th in Tokyo.
He explained that there are three main reasons that he accepted constructing the military port in his city. The first reason is that Urasoe City itself would get in step with the prefectural and Naha City governments regarding the SACO agreement. The second reason is that there is a need for cooperation between the national, prefectural and city governments in order to realize the city project to build an international resort area on the seaside of Camp Kinser. The third reason is that the acceptance of the military port leads to reduction of the U.S. military bases on Okinawa.
Matsumoto declined to resign from his post to take responsibility for the withdrawal of his campaign pledge.