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CAMP FOSTER, Okinawa — The big guns are scheduled to sound off Wednesday through July 30 in Ojojihara.

About 220 Marines with 3rd Battalion, 12 Marines, based at Camp Hansen, headed to Ojojihara training area in northern Honshu on July 7 for artillery training to fire the battalion’s six 155 mm medium howitzers, unit spokesman Lance Cpl. Eric Arndt said.

After most artillery live-fires were banned from Okinawa in December 1996, Ojojihara is one of five remaining areas in mainland Japan where Marines are allowed to conduct such exercises.

In an agreement with Japan’s government, artillery firing is scheduled with the goal of eight firing days, according to a Marine report. The additional days in the window for firing will allow for internal restrictions, inclement weather and maintenance days, according to the report.

When not firing the howitzers, Marines also will conduct crew-served weapons training.

The unit is to return to Okinawa in early August.

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