【PART 4】 The Mystery of Security Treaty Village (2): The UN Charter and the Postwar World


17 Exclusion of Okinawa and mainland Japan from human rights articles originate in UN Charter’s “enemy state clauses”


I did some research to find out that the people of Okinawa had already made multiple pleas to the UNHRC, to recognize the violation of human rights by U.S. military bases. It’s only natural. It’s an idea that someone like me, who only learned about this issue three or four years ago, could come up with. Of course the locals would have tried it long ago.

These requests were not answered, however. As the UN official I mentioned earlier said, any mention by the UN of the issue of U.S. bases in Okinawa has been in the form of “expressing concern about racism” by the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination.

The reason for this is that the UN Charter is not applied to the peace treaty with Japan after World War II. This means the UNHRC cannot make any statements to the U.S. government about their bases in Okinawa, even if they violate human rights. What they can do, on the other hand, is to point out to the Japanese government that ignoring this situation is a discrimination against Okinawans (Ryukyu people), a “different ethnic group.” This is the reality in international law.

The injustices that Okinawans and mainland Japanese alike suffer from, which I discussed in PART 1 — that is, the exclusion from human rights articles that can be seen in the Civil Aeronautics Act, for example — all turned out to originate in the “exclusion from the entire UN Charter,” which is stipulated in Article 107.