Japan Criticizes U.S. Presence After Marine Accused of Rape

TOKYO -- Japan urged the U.S. military Tuesday to tighten discipline after a U.S. Marine was arrested on suspicion of raping a 14-year-old girl on the southern island of Okinawa.

Staff Sgt. Tyrone Luther Hadnott, a 38-year-old Marine from Camp Courtney in Okinawa, was accused of attacking the girl in a parked car Sunday night. He was transferred to prosecutors from police custody Tuesday, an official from the Naha District Public Prosecutors Office said on condition of anonymity, citing policy.

Hadnott has not been charged.

The alleged assault has stirred anger on Okinawa, where the U.S. has several military bases and three U.S. servicemen raped a 12-year-old girl in 1995. That rape triggered huge protests against the military presence.

"There is the sense that we've had enough. We called on the U.S. to strengthen discipline and prevent crimes from happening again," said Japanese Foreign Minister Masahiko Komura, adding that the alleged attack could "complicate" disputes over U.S. bases.

Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda also condemned the alleged attack, asking during a session of Japan's parliament for action to prevent more crimes.

"This is unforgivable," Fukuda said. "The government will firmly negotiate with the U.S. We have to first find out what happened. We will do all we can to prevent a recurrence."

Joseph R. Donovan Jr., the U.S. Embassy's deputy chief of mission, was asked to the Foreign Ministry on Tuesday, where Vice Foreign Minister Mitoji Yabunaka told him the incident was "deplorable" and reiterated Tokyo's call for tighter troop discipline, the ministry said.