Although leases for land plots at 11 U.S. military bases expired at midnight May 14, a relevant law that was revised last month will enable the central government to continue providing the land to the U.S. forces.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Seiroku Kajiyama said at a news conference May 14 that the heavily protested April decision by the central government was “painful” but necessary for national interests. He said fulfilling Japan’s duty under the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty to secure a stable supply of land is vital for maintaining the safety of its people.

Kajiyama said that the government will continue its efforts to solve remaining problems related to the heavy concentration of U.S. bases in Okinawa.

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