Foreign Ministry to Review How Info is Shared on U.S. Soldiers’ Sex Crimes in Okinawa; Prefecture Drafts Opinion, Protest

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
The Foreign Ministry in Chiyoda Ward, Tokyo

The Foreign Ministry will work with relevant authorities to revise how information is shared about U.S. soldiers’ sexual assaults in Okinawa Prefecture, Ambassador in Charge of Okinawan Affairs Manabu Miyagawa said Tuesday. Police and the ministry have been slow to share such information with local governments.

Miyagawa, who works for the ministry, conveyed this to Yomitan Mayor Denjitsu Ishimine, who visited the ministry’s Okinawa Liaison Office to ask that the ministry prevent such crimes and rebuild the information-sharing system with local municipalities.

“We are consulting with the relevant ministries and agencies, including the investigative authorities, on a review of how information should be shared,” said Miyagawa. “We will do our utmost to announce the results of the revision soon.”

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshimasa Hayashi also spoke on the issue at a press conference on Tuesday. “The relevant ministries and agencies will discuss what can be done to ensure that crimes and accidents related to U.S. forces in Japan will not worry the local community, while considering the privacy of victims and the impact on investigations,” he said.