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Japan: Police detain protesters blocking construction of US helipads in Okinawa02:18

Japan: Police detain protesters blocking construction of US helipads in Okinawa

Japan, Takae, Okinawa
September 14, 2016 at 14:07 GMT -00:00 · Published

that’s endemic to this region, and this region is also so precious that it provides over 60 percent of Okinawa's drinking water."

Protesters demonstrated against the construction of helipads for the US military near Takae, Okinawa Prefecture, on Wednesday, blockading an access road in an attempt to stop the transportation of building materials to the site.

Police evicted a sit-down demonstration by protesters, who have been demonstrating against the construction of the helipads for nine years. Activists oppose potential noise pollution, and have expressed safety and environmental concerns connected with the pads. “It’s killing hundreds of thousands, thousands of life that’s endemic to this region, and this region is also so precious that it provides over 60 percent of Okinawa's drinking water," said Kimiko Kawamura, an artist and activist.

The Japanese government provided the use of Japan Self-Defence Forces helicopters to airlift equipment to the US military training area, Wednesday, in an attempt to overcome the protesters' blockade and speed up the construction process.

Tokyo agreed to build the six new helipads in 1996, in return for half of the US training land. Although two helipads have been completed, the resistance of locals has prevented completion of the other four.

Japan: Police detain protesters blocking construction of US helipads in Okinawa02:18
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Description

that’s endemic to this region, and this region is also so precious that it provides over 60 percent of Okinawa's drinking water."

Protesters demonstrated against the construction of helipads for the US military near Takae, Okinawa Prefecture, on Wednesday, blockading an access road in an attempt to stop the transportation of building materials to the site.

Police evicted a sit-down demonstration by protesters, who have been demonstrating against the construction of the helipads for nine years. Activists oppose potential noise pollution, and have expressed safety and environmental concerns connected with the pads. “It’s killing hundreds of thousands, thousands of life that’s endemic to this region, and this region is also so precious that it provides over 60 percent of Okinawa's drinking water," said Kimiko Kawamura, an artist and activist.

The Japanese government provided the use of Japan Self-Defence Forces helicopters to airlift equipment to the US military training area, Wednesday, in an attempt to overcome the protesters' blockade and speed up the construction process.

Tokyo agreed to build the six new helipads in 1996, in return for half of the US training land. Although two helipads have been completed, the resistance of locals has prevented completion of the other four.

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