TINIAN, ONE TIME NUCLEAR ATTACK BASE, OFFERS FACILITIES TO U.S. MILITARY

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AGAIN

WASHINGTON, D.C. (March 6, 2001 – Radio Australia)---Tinian, an island used by the United States to launch two atomic bomb attacks on Japan in 1944, could become a U.S. base again if the Northern Mariana Islands gets its way.

Northern Mariana Island's resident representative to Washington, Juan Babauta, has asked the Pentagon to consider Tinian as an alternative site for U.S. military bases in Okinawa, Japan.

The move comes amid mounting clamor to reduce American presence on Japan.

In a letter to Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, Mr. Babauta said Tinian was strategically located in the Asia-Pacific region and a base there would enable U.S. military forces to quickly respond during emergencies.

Mr. Babauta said the Northern Marianas, a U.S. territory, was proud of its role in national defense and was willing to do more.

For additional reports from Radio Australia, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Radio/TV News/Radio Australia.

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