Several hundred radical students and farmers have barricaded themselves in a one end of a new runway in order to prevent the construction of a major international airport at Narita, 37 miles (60 kms) east of Tokyo.
Several hundred radical students and farmers have barricaded themselves in a one end of a new runway in order to prevent the construction of a major international airport at Narita, 37 miles (60 kms) east of Tokyo. While construction work on the airport goes on around them, the protestors are digging in as part of a continued resistance to the alteration of the previously rural area into an airport.
On Friday (19 February), the protestors were adding to their defences by making bamboo stakes -- and VISNEWS cameraman Kimiaki Tanaka was on hand to film the scenes.
SYNOPSIS: Here, at Narita, some 37 miles east of Tokyo, a new international airport is being the object of long and often bloody resistance. By Friday, several hundred radical students and farmers were barricaded in caves, tunnels and ramshackle wooden forts -- ready to resist even with violence the conversion of the former rural area into an airport. The first jets are due to take off from Tokyo's second airport here later this year. And the dissidents have until Monday to end their protest.
But the deadline has made the hard-liners even more determined to fight it out. The barricades have sprung up -- like this one at he end of the new 13,000-foot runway.
The protestors seem ready to stay.
Thousands of trees have been felled and barbed wire obtained for the barricades. It's here the dissidents intend making their last stand. Clashes with construction men have been frequent throughout the airport's development. But the protestors have gradually given up land until they reached this area - last unfilled ravine blocking the main runway and this lone fort in the middle of the runway.
The students have reportedly put away enough supplies in their fortifications to last them for weeks. Apart from opposition to noise and pollution, the students apparently oppose the airport because they say it could be used for military porpoises by Japanese or American forces.