日米地位協定 今度こそ抜本見直しを

--The Asahi Shimbun, May 24
EDITORIAL: Okinawa leader Onaga is right: SOFA needs a sweeping review
(社説)日米地位協定 今度こそ抜本見直しを

Okinawa Governor Takeshi Onaga on May 23 urged Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to initiate a fundamental review of the Japan-U.S. Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA), a symbol of deep resentment about the heavy U.S. military presence in Okinawa Prefecture.
“We will be told that Japan’s independence is a myth if the current Status of Forces Agreement remains unchanged,” Onaga said in his meeting with Abe over the recent slaying of a Japanese woman in Okinawa Prefecture.
 「今の地位協定のもとでは、日本の独立は『神話だ』と言われますよ」

Onaga referred to the famous remark made in a 1963 speech by then American High Commissioner Paul Caraway, who said the idea of self-government in Okinawa under U.S. military rule was nothing more than a “myth.”
 米軍政下、沖縄の自治を「神話」と言い放ったキャラウェイ高等弁務官の言葉を使って、沖縄県の翁長雄志知事がきのう、安倍首相に日米地位協定の見直しを求めた。

The governor met with Abe at the prime minister’s office in Tokyo following the arrest of an American civilian worker at a U.S. base in Okinawa Prefecture on May 19 on suspicion of abandoning the body of the victim.
The incident has sparked outbursts of anger among people in Okinawa, and a growing chorus there is calling for the removal of all U.S. bases from the prefecture.
 元米海兵隊員の軍属による女性死体遺棄事件を受け、沖縄ではいま、「全基地撤去」を求める声が広がるほど激しい怒りに包まれている。

To prevent additional crimes or accidents involving U.S. military personnel and related workers, U.S. bases in the prefecture should be consolidated and curtailed quickly.
米軍関係者による事件・事故をこれ以上繰り返さないためにも、米軍基地の整理・縮小を急ぐ必要がある。

Onaga’s demand for a revision to SOFA reflects the fact that this agreement, which grants U.S. forces stationed in Japan various privileges, has been a major factor behind the failure to stop crimes involving American soldiers and members of the “civilian component.”
 同時に、翁長知事が日米地位協定の見直しを求めるのは、米兵や軍属らによる犯罪が後を絶たない背景に、在日米軍にさまざまな特権を与えているこの協定があるとみるからだ。

Every time a base-related crime or accident took place, provisions of SOFA that restrict Japan’s criminal investigations and jurisdiction concerning such cases were roundly criticized.
 地位協定をめぐっては、これまでも米軍人や軍属による犯罪や事故が起きるたびに、日本の犯罪捜査や裁判権を制限する条項が問題となってきた。

In the latest case, the suspect, a former U.S. serviceman, was arrested by prefectural police on suspicion of committing a crime while off-duty, so no SOFA-related issue has arisen.
 今回、元米兵は公務外の容疑で県警が逮捕したため、地位協定上の問題は発生していない。

If the U.S. military had detained the suspect first, however, the transfer of his custody to Japanese authorities could have been delayed or even refused.
だが、もし米軍が先に身柄を拘束していれば、引き渡しまで時間がかかったり拒否されたりする恐れもあった。

In the 1995 rape of a Japanese schoolgirl by three off-duty U.S. servicemen in Okinawa, the United States detained the suspects and initially refused Okinawa prefectural police’s request for their handover.
 95年に起きた少女暴行事件では、公務外の米兵ら3容疑者の身柄を米側が拘束し、県警の引き渡し請求を拒んだ。

In response to the huge wave of anger among Okinawan people triggered by the incident, Washington later agreed to an improvement in the implementation of SOFA, requiring the United States to “give sympathetic consideration” to Japanese requests for the handover of suspects before indictment in cases of vicious crimes.
 県民の強い反発でその後、凶悪事件に限って起訴前の身柄引き渡しに米側が「好意的配慮を払う」とする運用改善で合意した。

This rule has since been applied to all types of crimes. But Japanese investigations into crimes involving U.S. military personnel could still be affected by discretionary decisions by the United States.
その後、全犯罪に広がったが、米側の裁量で捜査が左右される恐れはいまも残る。

Despite the improvement, SOFA still needs a sweeping review. While the prefectural government has been demanding reform for many years, the Japanese government has refused to propose a fundamental review of the agreement for a possible revision to the United States.
 こうした運用改善が実現した例はあるものの、地位協定の改定を含む抜本的な見直しは、県の長年の要求をよそに、政府は米国に提起しようとしない。

Onaga also asked Abe to arrange a meeting with U.S. President Barack Obama during his visit to Japan.
 翁長知事はきのう、オバマ米大統領に直接面会する機会を設けるよう首相に求めた。

But Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga voiced a dim view of Onaga’s request, saying, “As a matter of course, issues in the fields of diplomacy and security will be discussed between national governments.”
しかし菅官房長官は「外交・安全保障に関わる問題は、中央政府間で協議するのは当然だ」と否定的な見方を示した。

Onaga is seeking an opportunity to hold direct talks with Obama because the central government has done nothing to solve this problem.
 その中央政府が動かないからこそ、知事は大統領との直接の面会を求めているのだろう。

Both South Korea and Germany have achieved revisions to their own status of forces agreements with the United States. Why is the Japanese government unwilling to even ask the United States to consider a revision to the unfair agreement?
 韓国やドイツは、米国との地位協定の改定を実現させている。なのになぜ、日本政府は米国に改定を求めないのか。

Later this week, Obama will come to Japan to attend this year’s summit of the Group of Seven industrial nations in Mie Prefecture.
 今週、主要国首脳会議(伊勢志摩サミット)のためにオバマ大統領が来日する。

Abe should, of course, call on Obama to take steps to prevent a recurrence and strengthen discipline on U.S. personnel and related workers. But Abe should also make specific proposals concerning a reduction in the U.S. bases in Okinawa and a revision to the agreement.
再発防止や綱紀粛正を求めるのはもちろんだが、基地縮小や地位協定の抜本見直しについても、首相から具体的に提起すべきだ。
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2016-05-25 10:48 | 英字新聞

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