Kishida meets Okinawa’s governor

Kyodo

Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida met with Okinawa Gov. Hirokazu Nakaima on Saturday to discuss the U.S. Futenma air base’s relocation, aiming to prepare the ground for his trip to Washington on Thursday with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

Nakaima reiterated his opposition to relocating U.S. Marine Corps Air Station Futenma within Okinawa under the current, highly controversial bilateral agreement, saying he intends to “move it outside the prefecture.” The governor’s opinion is important because he has the power to authorize reclamation of the publicly owned waters that would host the replacement air station.

After the meeting, Kishida visited Nago to view the area proposed as the new site for Futenma. He was also scheduled to meet with Ginowan’s mayor later Saturday.