(TOKYO) — The governor of Japan’s Okinawa island demanded a high U.S. army commander take more durable prevention measures and extra transparency hours after officers had been instructed that greater than 60 Marines at two bases have been contaminated with the coronavirus over the previous few days.
Okinawan officers on Sunday reported a complete of 61 instances — 38 of them at Marine Corps Air Station Futenma, which is on the heart of a relocation dispute, and one other 23 at Camp Hansen — since July 7. They mentioned that U.S. army officers instructed them the 2 bases have since been put in lockdown.
The disclosure of the precise figures got here solely after Okinawa’s repeated requests to the U.S. army.
Gov. Denny Tamaki, in phone talks late Saturday with Lt. Gen. H. Stacy Clardy, commander of III Marine Expeditionary Drive, demanded the united statesmilitary enhance illness prevention measures to most ranges, cease sending personnel from the mainland U.S. to Okinawa and seal the bases, in addition to present extra transparency.
“Okinawans are shocked by what we had been instructed (by the U.S. army),” Tamaki instructed a information convention Saturday. “This can be very regrettable that the infections are quickly spreading amongst U.S. personnel once we Okinawans are doing our utmost to comprise the infections.”
“We now have sturdy doubts that the U.S. army has taken satisfactory illness prevention measures,” he added.
Tamaki mentioned he desires extra talks with the U.S. army. Okinawan officers additionally requested the Japanese authorities to stress the U.S. aspect to offer particulars together with the variety of instances, seal off Futenma and Camp Hansen, and step up preventive measures.
Including to their concern is quarantining of an unidentified variety of American service members arriving from the mainland U.S. for ongoing workers rotations at an off-base resort on account of scarcity of area on base, officers mentioned.
The Marines mentioned in a press release Friday that the troops had been taking extra protecting measures to restrict the unfold of the coronavirus and had been limiting off-base actions. The assertion mentioned measures are “to guard our forces, our households, and the local people,” with out offering particulars on the infections.
The Marine Corps Installations Pacific mentioned on its Fb web page on Saturday that “this week, the Marine Corps skilled two localized clusters of people who examined optimistic for the virus.” It mentioned those that examined optimistic had been in isolation.
Okinawa is dwelling to greater than half of about 50,000 American troops based mostly in Japan underneath a bilateral safety pact, and the residents are delicate to U.S. base-related issues. Many Okinawans have lengthy complained about air pollution, noise and crime.
Okinawans additionally oppose a deliberate relocation of Futenma Air Base from the present web site in a densely populated space within the south to a much less populated space on the east coast.
Okinawa has had about 150 instances of the coronavirus. In all, Japan has had about 21,000 instances and 1,000 deaths, with Tokyo reporting greater than 200 new instances for a 3rd straight day Saturday.