Thanks to all 30,313 of you, from 155 countries who took part in recent our "Save the Dugong" capaign. Last week, the Japanese Defense Ministry in Naha, Okinawa, received 30,313 letters from you, delivered by Greenpeace Japan and the crew of the Esperanza (some of whom dressed up as dugong!).

They also took part in a sit-in by local activists which has been taking place for more than three years now, and the messaeges were also delivered to the Ministry of Environment in Tokyo.

The above video shows the sit-in and delivery - even if you don't speak Japanese, you can still understand what's going on!

The Esperanza also sailed to Henoko, the area threatened by the airbase expansion, and where the dugongs live. About 30 fishing boats and kayaks welcomed the crew. While the Esperanza was at Henoko, one construction worker told local people that "while Greenpeace is in Henoko, we will not do any construction" - proving that sometimes, just showing up can have the desire effect.

Jun Hoshikawa, the ever-eloquent executive director of Greenpeace Japan, said that "the best Samurai can win the battle without using his sword. This is what the Esperanza did here in Okinawa".

Joining the Esperanza in Okinawa was a diving team, with members from Japan, the US and Germany, who conducted research activities in tandem with local people in the region for a week, in order to prove the importance of protecting the area as a marine reserve.

More news as it happens...

News report 27th September in Japanese and English » (click yellow boxes)

Second news report, 2nd October, Japanese and English » (click yellow boxes)

Background info:

Stop the airbase - save the dugongs of Okinawa »

Video: Save the dugong of Okinawa now! »