Okinawa assembly protests nuke leak
The Okinawa prefectural assembly unanimously adopted a resolution and an opinion Wednesday protesting that a U.S. nuclear submarine made port calls at a U.S. naval facility in the prefecture while water containing trace amounts of radiation leaked from it, Kyodo News Agency reported Wednesday.
Members of the prefectural assembly will deliver the resolution and opinion to U.S. government institutions based in the prefecture, possibly next week, Kyodo reported.
According to the report, the text of the resolution and opinion says the Los Angeles-class fast-attack submarine USS Houston called at the White Beach Naval Facility in the city of Uruma five times between July 2006 and this April, when the contaminated water was leaking.
The problem was discovered during a maintenance check July 17 in Hawaii. Navy officials said that the water had not been in direct contact with the nuclear reactor and that a crewmember exposed to the water proved to be unaffected.
The assembly asks the U.S. military to refrain from sending the Houston to the facility until it is confirmed safe, Kyodo wrote.
Though the amount of radiation was minimal, the fact that the vessel repeatedly visited the facility while radiation was leaking caused great concern among Okinawa prefecture residents, Kyodo quoted the documents as saying.