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Japan's parliament endorses accord on relocation of U.S. Marines to Guam
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08:00, May 14, 2009

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Japan's Diet (Parliament) on Wednesday officially approved an accord on the relocation of U.S. Marines from Okinawa to Guam by 2014.

Although the opposition-controlled upper house rejected the pact in the morning, Yohei Kono, speaker of the lower house, declared the endorsement of the pact at the house's plenary session later in the day following a joint conference of the two chambers, which ended without a compromise.

Under Article 59 of the Japanese Constitution, the more powerful House of Representatives has the final say by holding a revote to pass a bill if the upper house rejects it or holds no vote within 60 days of receiving the bill.

On April 14, the ruling-led lower house adopted the accord, under which Japan will spend a total of 2.8 billion U.S. dollars on "projects to develop facilities and infrastructure on Guam" for the relocation of some 8,000 3rd Marine Expeditionary Force personnel and their 9,000 family members from Okinawa by 20.

And Japan is also bound to provide 6.09 billion dollars of the estimated 10.27 billion dollars needed for the relocation of Marines to the U.S. territory in the Pacific.

The pact was signed by visiting U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and her Japanese counterpart Hirofumi Nakasone signed a new pact on Feb. 17.


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