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Mainland city rejects moving P3C Orions from Okinawa

Date Posted: 2005-06-04

Kanoya City does not want any American military aircraft stationed there.

Reaction was swift from Mayor Sakae Yamashita, who “strongly, adamantly opposed relocation” of U.S. Navy reconnaissance planes from Okinawa. A proposal announced by the Japanese government calls for shifting various Marine Corps aircraft to mainland Japan and helicopters to Kadena Air Base on Okinawa, while moving Navy patrol planes to the Kanoya Japan Maritime Self Defense Base.

The goal is to close the controversial Futenma Marine Corps Air Station in Ginowan, which was site of a helicopter crash last August. The long term plan for moving Futenma to northern Okinawa has been bogged down in various political and environmental issues.

The proposal was to move 10 Navy P3C Orion submarine reconnaissance and tracking aircraft now stationed at Kadena Air Base to Kanoya, making room for the Marine aviation assets. Kanoya City’s mayor cited noise and increased potential for danger as primary reasons he doesn’t want to see the U.S. planes near his city.

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