US Marines to Partially Move Out of Japan
By Vasudevan Sridharan | April 27, 2012 6:32 PM EST
The marines and their families will be relocated to different parts of Guam, Hawaii and Australia from Okinawa, a key place in the deal.
A joint-statement between the countries said that, the two governments "reconfirmed their view that [this] remains the only viable solution that has been identified to date," reported AFP.
"Recognising the strong desires of Okinawa residents, these relocations are to be completed as soon as possible while ensuring operational capability throughout the process," the statement added.
The move has come ahead of the Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda's visit to Washington to meet President Barack Obama.
Without mentioning any timeframe of the redeployment, the statement says only 9,000 of the marine troops will be shifted and another 10,000 will remain in the place.
The Okinawa base has been controversial for a long time as the locals have been protesting to move the base.
Mentioning the deal was a necessary to reflect an evolving reality, the Japanese Foreign Minister Koichiro Gemba said, "Changes in the security environment will not wait for us. Japan and the United States have to assume our responsibility and do our part and implement the plans in a speedy manner," quoted AFP.
"The [base-move] problem brought everything to a halt. We must take progress where we can," Gemba added.
Meanwhile, the US is also pleased with the decision. "I am very pleased that, after many years, we have reached this important agreement and the plan of action," the Telegraph quoted US Secretary of Defence Lean Panetta as saying.
"I applaud the hard work and effort that went into crafting it. Japan is not just a close ally, but also a close friend," Panetta added.
Nevertheless, questions are expected to continue about the relocation of the military base Futenma within Okinawa. The heads of the states are expected to resolve the issue when they meet at Washington on Monday.
On the official announcement of the relocation, the Assistant Secretary of State of East Asian and Pacific Affairs Kurt Campbell said, "This presence is integral to our larger strategy of rebalancing toward the Asia Pacific," reported Aljazeera.
"We think it breaks a very long stalemate that has plagued our politics, that has clogged both of systems, that has made it difficult to deal with the critical and crucial issues that confront the United States and Japan," Campbell added.
To contact the editor, e-mail:
Most Popular Slideshows
- Prince Harry & Camilla Thurlow Getting Serious, St. Tropez Holiday Before The Prince’s 30th Birthday [PHOTOS]
- Angelina Jolie & Brad Pitt Heads to Malta For New Movie After A Whirlwind French Wedding [PHOTOS]
- Prince William & Kate Middleton Caught Flirting In A Countryside Dinner Date [PHOTOS]
- Chris Martin Getting Serious With Jennifer Lawrence, Actress Joining Coldplay Tour [PHOTOS]
Join the Conversation
- Ukraine Crisis: Putin Dangles Nuclear War Threat, US Senators Advise Sending Defensive Weapons
- James Foley Is A Spy – Jihadi Recruiter Reveals
- Australia's Renewable Energy Industry Braces for Removal of Support
- Europe, US Next on ISIS’ Hit List, Says Saudi King; Seized ISIS Laptop Reveals Terrifying Bio-Warfare Plans
- Australia Races Against Potential Genocide In Iraq
- Apple iPhone 6 Actual Release Date after September 9 Confirmed 128GB Variant with New Resolution
- Moto G2 Release Roundup: Specs, Pricing, and Release Date Details
- PlayStation 4 Killing Xbox One Costing Microsoft Millions But It's Fine
- Google Chrome 64-bit for Windows 8 and Window 7 with Mac Beta Available
- Apple iOS 8 vs Android 5.0 L: OS Wars Puts Android to Lower while Apple to Higher
- Nexus 6 on Release Date Confirmed with Phablet-Size Display as FCC Filing Hints of 5.9-Inch Screen
- Google Can Kill Samsung with Android KitKat and Android One: Here's How