In a surprise about-face, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Friday agreed to an out-of-court settlement for three lawsuits filed over the relocation of U.S. Marine Corps Air Station Futenma.

The settlement requires Tokyo to suspend land reclamation off the Henoko coast in Okinawa Prefecture, and Abe complied by ordering a halt.

It also requires the two parties to fight just one, unified court case on whether construction work should continue and to observe its ruling.