Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Guam legislature adopts resolution on military buildup plan

Guam legislature adopts resolution on military buildup plan

Feb 11 02:38 AM US/Eastern

HAGATNA, Guam, Feb. 11 (AP) - (Kyodo) — The Guam legislature unanimously adopted a resolution Thursday urging the U.S. military and other relevant authorities to drastically amend the current military buildup plan for the island, citing many "flaws" including the impact on the environment and the threat to islanders' property.

The resolution also called for more information on the relocation of U.S. military personnel from Japan's Okinawa Prefecture and for a "town hall" meeting with President Barack Obama on the issue when he visits the Pacific island next month.

According to Assembly Speaker Judith Won Pat, the legislature's main areas of concern in the detailed buildup plan, called the Draft Environmental Impact Statement, include the possibility of land seizure, large-scale dredging of coral reefs and the lack of thought given to the social impact of the buildup.

Most islanders came face to face with these issues for the first time when the Joint Guam Program Office, a U.S. military task force handling the Guam buildup, released the statement in November, Won Pat said. She has complained to the JGPO about the fact that only three months have been allowed for public comment.

The resolution was nonbinding but will be sent to Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama, Obama and U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki Moon, among others.

Meanwhile, the legislators handed a draft resolution to members of a Japanese government fact-finding delegation during their visit to the legislature in Hagatna the same day.

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