10,000 demand reduction of US military bases
21 January 2007
On January 21, RENGO Kyushu Block and RENGO Oita held the 8th Rally to Demand the Reduction of US Military Bases in Hijundai, Oita Prefecture. The US military decided, due to ‘management reasons,’ that the shooting exercises using real bullets, usually held in Hijundai, would be cancelled this year. But 9,724 trade unionists from the local Oita Prefecture as well as each area in the Kyushu Block still gathered at the rally in protest of the US military presence.
Scene at the rally
The first speaker, representing the organizers was the President of the RENGO Kyushu Block, from RENGO Oita, Mr. Shimazaki. He was followed by RENGO HQ General Secretary Koga who declared: “When demanding the reduction of US military bases, it is essential to demand a revision of the legal basis for the provision of the bases, which is the U.S.- Japan Status of Forces Agreement. RENGO is concentrating all of its strength on achieving this goal. ” This was followed by slogan chanting and songs.
Finally, the rally declaration: “RENGO urges the US military and the Japanese government to reduce US military bases and demands the revision of the U.S.- Japan Status of Forces Agreement in order to achieve a peaceful world” was adopted. An emergency appeal demanding the withdrawal of the plan to strengthen the Iwakuni Base was also adopted. The rally ended with all participants confirming these resolutions.