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Construction project threatens cultural asset

Date Posted: 1998-05-30

One of the last remaining WW II era Japanese military hospital shelters is in danger of crumbling down because of land construction work near-by in Haebaru Town. According to town officials, the shelter, which is declared to be an Important Cultural Asset of Haebaru Town, once was staffed by more than 60 nurses, mostly students of Shuri High School and military doctors.

A land construction project near-by which was started last May, caused landslides which threatened the shelter and Haebaru officials asked the landowner to halt the construction. The landowner then asked the town to purchase the land, but the town refused.

At the same time, officials in charge of the shelter say that they are tasked to keep the shelter in its original shape. The problem is that no one seems to now what the original shape is. "We cannot see the shelter very well and it has already sustained some damage. Some of it is covered with soil and stones," one town official was quoted saying at an interview.

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