OSAKA, Aug. 12 (Xinhua) -- The U.S. military resumed the additional controversial deployment of Osprey military aircraft to the southern Japanese island of Okinawa on Monday amid protests over the move, local press reported.
At least 8 MV-22 Osprey transport aircraft, part of the second Osprey squadron to Japan, took off from U.S. Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni in Yamaguchi Prefecture on Monday morning, and all of them landed in Futenma Air Station in Okinawa by noon, local time, where they are deployed, according to Nippon Hoso Kyokai ( NHK), Japan's public broadcaster.
Prior to Monday's delivery flights from Iwakuni, other two of the Osprey squadron were deployed at the military base in Okinawa on Aug. 3, but the U.S. Marine Corps had to postpone the additional deployment operations in the wake of last week's crash of a U.S. Air Force rescue helicopter there. Last month, 12 tilt-rotor hybrid aircraft, shipped earlier from the United States, were first delivered to the air station of Iwakuni, and they performed various system checks there before flying to Okinawa where another squadron already arrived last year. The remaining two Osprey aircraft in Iwakuni are expected to leave the air station within days.
Meanwhile, local media reported that Okinawa Governor Hirokazu Nakaima and residents around the military base in Okinawa protested on the day against the additional deployment, stressing their strong concern over safety issues related to the aircraft.