(TOKYO) — Thousands of U.S. Marines in Japan could be headed to Guam soon.
Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda says he is considering a plan that would transfer close to 5,000 Marines out of the southern island of Okinawa, where a majority of the U.S. bases are located.
That’s a break from a previous bilateral agreement that calls for 8,000 Marines to be moved out of Japan, so long as the controversial base Futenma is moved to a remote part of the island.
Okinawans, who are increasingly frustrated with U.S. military presence, say they want that base off the island altogether. That opposition has stalled U.S. efforts to realign troops in Asia.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Ralph Ellis and Steve Almasy, CNN
Ray Sanchez, CNN
Camille Verdier, Steve Visser and Margot Haddad, CNN
Chandrika Narayan and Steve Almasy, CNN