Military in Japan: No late drinking in town alone for E5 and below
YOKOSUKA NAVAL BASE, Japan — Junior enlisted servicemembers stationed in Japan must now be accompanied after 10 p.m. when drinking alcoholic beverages off base, according to a new U.S. Forces Japan liberty policy.
The policy, which replaces a 2014 version, also creates three new operational levels that allow commanders to place varying restrictions on movement and alcohol consumption.
The changes follow a series of arrests in Japan that last month sparked one of the largest protests against the U.S. military in decades on Okinawa, where half of all U.S. servicemembers are stationed.
“Acts of indiscipline or criminal behavior by U.S. military personnel adversely impact international relations, tarnish the image of the United States military and affect our military readiness,” said an order signed by Lt. Gen. John Dolan, USFJ commander.
Servicemembers in pay grades E-5 and below who drink off base after 10 p.m. must go out with another servicemember, Defense Department civilian worker or DOD family member; if they drink with someone else, that person should be command approved, according to the policy.
Servicemembers in all ranks are banned from drinking alcoholic beverages off base between midnight and 5 a.m., a rule instituted as part of the 2014 policy. In pay grades E-5 and below, a 1 a.m. to 5 a.m. curfew remains in effect.
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