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US offers apology over alleged Okinawa rape incident

Published on Oct 26, 2012 1:29 PM
 
Civic group members shout slogans and hold placards as they attend a protest over the alleged rape of a local woman by two US servicemen in Okinawa, in front of the prime minister's official residence in Tokyo on Oct 20, 2012. The United States has issued its most high-level apology yet to Japan over the alleged rape of a woman in Okinawa by two servicemen. -- PHOTO: AFP

TOKYO (AFP) - The United States (US) has issued its most high-level apology yet to Japan over the alleged rape of a woman in Okinawa by two servicemen.

US Assistant Secretary of State Kurt Campbell told an audience in Tokyo on Friday of Washington's sorrow, the latest move to soothe anger at a time of heightened anti-US feeling on the island.

"I need to begin, if I may, with a heartfelt apology and (the expression of) deep commitment to Japanese friends," Mr Campbell, the US point man on East Asia, said in a symposium on the Japan-US alliance in Tokyo. "These incidents are profoundly, deeply regrettable and the United States takes them very seriously," he said.

The US put all 47,000 military personnel - both in Okinawa and elsewhere - under an indefinite nighttime curfew in response to the alleged rape, following the arrest of two servicemen last week.

 
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