The US military may begin moving some of the Marines stationed in Okinawa, southwestern Japan, to Guam in 2025.
The Japanese and US governments have agreed to relocate about 9,000 Marines and their families from Okinawa to Guam, Hawaii and other places outside Japan. This is part of reorganization plans for the US military in Japan. The two governments say the move will start in the first half of the 2020s.
Sources familiar with the matter say the Marines told the Guam assembly in February that they plan to start the transfer between January and March of 2025.
The sources say 5,000 Marines along with 2,400 family members are expected to move to Guam, and that the relocation will likely take about 18 months.
They also note that there are concerns about protecting the environment and cultural assets in Guam in connection with the construction of new facilities. The work is expected to be finished before the relocation begins.
The Marines told NHK that they have been frequently reviewing the plans based on progress in preparations and new information.
Observers point to the possibility that the plans could be delayed.