Marine veteran confesses to murder, fueling more Japanese protests of US military

Japenese protesting

The arrest of an American contractor on a U.S. military installation on Okinawa for the murder of a local woman has sparked an outrage on the island.

Japan’s prime minister, Shinzo Abe, said, “We urge the U.S. side to take thorough measures to prevent the recurrence of such events.”

The recent arrest has only added fuel to an already present anti-U.S. military sentiment on Okinawa.

According to CBS, the large American military presence and “repeated instances of violent encounters” between troops and locals created this sentiment and opposition to the decision to relocate a U.S. Marine Corps air station on the island.

In 1995 a school girl was raped by three U.S. service members and ultimately led to the relocation of Marine Corps Air Station Futenma to a less populated area of the island.

Kenneth Shinzato, 32, was arrested last week after he provided the location of the body of a local girl who had been missing.

According to RT, Shinzato is a U.S. Marine veteran who uses his Japanese wife’s name, Shinazato.  Kenneth Franklin Gadson confessed to the murder of 20-year old Rina Shimabukuro who was reported missing on April 28th.

“I have no words to express, considering how the family feels,” Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said.

“As I look back at all the developments to date, I’m simply speechless,” said Okinawa Gov. Takeshi Onaga.

Onega has strongly opposed the relocation of U.S. Marine Corps Air Station Gutenma, advocating the removal of the base from the southern Japanese island.

Protests of the U.S. military presence, in which almost half of the 50,000 troops in Japan are on Okinawa, continued over the weekend.

One activist even proposed that all vehicles used by U.S. military personnel and contractors should be confined to their bases.

Obama is also expected to be the first president to pay respects at the Hiroshima memorial, a move that many feel will be perceived as an apology for dropping the atomic bombs -and potentially saving countless American lives- in World War II.

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