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Okinawa City streets quiet after clubs placed Off Limits

Date Posted: 2004-04-15

One week into new restrictions on three Okinawa City night spots, business is slow and owners are complaining about loss of business.

The Military’s Disciplinary Control Board put three clubs off limits April 9th because of charges the clubs were selling drinks to underage personnel, that there were frequent fights in the clubs, and that they were refusing to allow military police and courtesy patrols to enter the establishemtnts.

Under the rules, all military personnel, as well as civilian workers and dependents subject to military authority, are prohibited from entering the Off Limits disco clubs.

Last weekend was quiet without the military presence, because Japanese youth tend not to go to clubs frequented by GI’s. Now, disco owners are upset because they have no patrons.

One owner claims the off limits rationale is inaccurate and unfair. “The American military side says we have to check the ID Cards and if they’re under 20, they are refused. We are doing checks to them very carefully so the military shouldn’t place my business off limits. If Americans don’t come, my shop is dead.

“I can’t make money and this town is dead without Americans.”

Okinawa City’s Social Restaurant and Bar Association is asking Okinawa City Mayor Masakazu Nakasone to stop the off limits. American military last placed clubs off limits in 1999, when the shut down Gate 2 Street by Kadena Air Base. It’s the first time individual clubs have been singled out. The three are the Else, Pyramid and Manhattan.

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