A 'few dozen' US Marines in Okinawa, Japan, infected with COVID-19

A 'few dozen' US Marines in Okinawa, Japan, infected with COVID-19
© Greg Nash

A few dozen U.S. Marines have tested positive for coronavirus in Okinawa, Japan, officials announced Saturday.

Okinawa Gov. Denny Tamaki said at a press conference Saturday that he could only disclose that a “few dozen” American marines tested positive because the U.S. military asked that the exact number not be released, the Associated Press reported.

Local outlets have reported that about 60 people had been infected, according to the AP. 

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About half of the roughly 50,000 American troops in Japan under a bilateral security pact are stationed in Okinawa. 

Tamaki said the outbreak occurred in Marine Corps Air Station Futenma and Camp Hansen.

“Okinawans are shocked by what we were told [by the U.S. military],” Tamaki said at a press conference. “We now have strong doubts that the U.S. military has taken adequate disease prevention measures.”

Tamaki is reportedly calling the U.S. to step up preventative measures in their Japan bases and to increase transparency with Okinawa officials. Local media also reported that the Okinawan assembly adopted a resolution Friday protesting the U.S. military’s lack of transparency about its outbreak on base, according to the wire service. 

The Marines announced Friday that they were increasing preventive measures.

The Pentagon did not immediately respond to a request for comment.