Tags: obama | soldier | accident | japan

U.S. Soldier Hit and Run Mars Obama Japan Visit

Wednesday, 11 November 2009 12:20 AM

President Barack Obama's visit to Japan this week is being overshadowed by a demand that US forces hand over a soldier accused over a hit-and-run road accident.

Yukio Hatoyama, the prime minister, who is due to meet Mr Obama on Friday, said on Tuesday that Japanese authorities should be allowed to prosecute the suspect, who is being held by US authorities, after a Japanese man was run over and killed last weekend near an American base.

Mr Obama has also disappointed city authorities in Hiroshima and Nagasaki by declining to visit the scenes of the atomic bomb attacks due to the brevity of his trip.

The US President won the Nobel Peace Prize in part for his work towards nuclear disarmament.

Mass demonstrations on the island of Okinawa were triggered after an American military vehicle killed a 66-year-old man on Saturday.

Mr Hatoyama has backed demands that the service member detained in relation to the death of Masakazu Hokama be handed over to Japanese justice.

Japan's newly elected government was voted into office on a platform of curtailing the US military presence on Okinowa.

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Wednesday, 11 November 2009 12:20 AM
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