GINOWAN, Okinawa — Frustrated by what some city officials said was Mayor Yoichi Iha’s “obsession” for closing the Marine Corps Air Station Futenma, the Ginowan City Council on Tuesday denied him city funds for a U.S. lobbying trip.

During a budget session, the council deleted about 8.7 million yen ($81,110) for the mayor’s planned trip to Washington.

According to local media accounts, several council members who voted to cut funds for the trip said the mayor was obsessed with closing the base and ignoring other important matters.

They also said lobbying the U.S. government was a waste of time since the national government was responsible for constructing an airport to replace the Marine base.

Contacted Thursday, Iha said the council’s action was “regrettable.” “I still believe that a direct appeal to the U.S. government is critical,” he said. “I will take time to consider responses to this matter.”

He said he had planned to make the trip to the States in late May or June.

Historical documents on display

HAEBARU, Okinawa — The Okinawa prefectural archives is making public nearly 400,000 pages of historical documents issued by the United States Civil Administration of the Ryukyu Islands (USCAR) during the 27 years of U.S. occupation after World War II.

“The historic documents shed light on Okinawa’s postwar history,” said Yoko Fukuchi, a spokeswoman for the archives, located in the Arakawa district of Haebaru, near Naha. Documents on display include periodicals, cultural exchange programs and the U.S. military’s information campaign on the 1971 removal of poison gas from U.S. military storage.

The prefectural archives, in association with Japan’s National Diet Library, began compiling some 3.48 million sets of declassified documents issued by USCAR in 1977. The collection covers the years 1950 to 1972, when Okinawa was returned to Japan.

The archive is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, except Mondays. Admission is free.

For more information, call the archive at 098-888-3875.

Writer’s workshop set

CAMP FOSTER, Okinawa — The Okinawa branch of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators is sponsoring a writer’s workshop April 16 at the Kubasaki High School Media Center.

The workshop will feature Australian writer Jen McVeity, chairperson of the society and author of more than 20 books, including “Dreamcatcher” and “Shadow Seeker,” two popular children’s books.

The workshop will be split into two sessions, with topics including avoiding writer’s block, brainstorming, rewriting drafts and “first-page challenges.”

Anyone interested in pre-registering for the workshop can do so at the libraries on Camp Foster and Kadena Air Base. For more information, contact Carla Shank at DSN 634-4469, commercial 098-933-9020, or by e-mail at

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