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Environmental groups on Tuesday staged protests against the Japanese government's decision to allow reclamation work for a new US military base in Okinawa to resume.
Protestors rallied outside the defence ministry in Tokyo, public-broadcaster NHK reported.
They called on the government to heed public opinion and comply with Okinawa Governor Takeshi Onaga's decision to stop the work.
A representative of NGO, FoEJapan, said it's doubtful the land ministry gave Okinawa's views sufficient consideration.
Kanna Mitsuta said the government has overstepped its authority by proceeding with the construction. She added that the base issue should not be regarded as Okinawa's problem alone, and must be debated openly.
Seventy years after the end of the Second World War and 43 years after the US returned Okinawa to Japanese control, the US maintains 32 US military bases and installations plus 48 restricted air and ocean training sites on the Japanese island.