lunedì 15 settembre 2014


Nice afternoon, yesterday, at JICA in Maeda, Urasoe. Tsuyako Kinjo, my dear friend owner of Sudaka (the Argentinian restaurant in Sakaemachi market) and her friends organized the annual Cuban event that every year gathers the passionate lovers of the revolutionary island. There were not a single Cuban person, as in Okinawa they don't grow on the trees. Anyway, we had fun and it has been a very peculiar moment in the everyday life here around.

I have been helped by the always-nice Tatsu Mabuya-san and by a new Italian buddy in Okinawa, Goya-san, directly from Bulàgna. We organized a little table for charity for the stray cats in Naha and some people signed my petition against the gas chamber in Ōzato (where every day stray cats and dogs are killed with gas).

We watched a nice, short documentary on the ‘Isla Grande’, then I held a slideshow on ‘my’ Cuba. I made it as short as possible, I know well the soporific power of slideshows (Mabuya was sleeping after three minutes; he’s a night dance party guy, so I understand his tireness). I wore an almost-Cuban guyabera shirt (actually from Belize, but I didn’t tell to anybody, so keep it for yourself, ok?). Then other nice shows, even if not 100% Cuban, followed.

A funny Japanese magician involved Goya-san in a cards game. Besides: white doves, swords and fire, all the typical ingredients of magical shows. Leandro Moreno, a friendly karate sensei from Cordoba (Argentina), who lived in Cuba for a year and a half, talked about the influence of the Cuban Revolución on the whole Latin America, especially on the sanitary and educational system in Argentina. He stressed the positive, human side of it, and dropped a tear while talking of Camilo Cienfuegos, the ‘very human guy’ of the Cuban Revolution.

More shows: two young women from Jamaica gave a hot dance show, teaching how to dance in the Jamaican way. At the end I asked them why they didn’t dance the daggering (please, check on YouTube, adults only), and they were almost shocked by the fact the a Bolognese knew about that stuff.

The last show was a drum+claves duo music show. At the drum Midori-san, a Brazilian friend, at the claves a very good singer that sang some Cuban songs. She also taught how to sing and the participants followed her. Plus: a salsa dance moment, a photo exhibition on Okinawans that visited the Japanese community in Cuba, plus sweets, drinks and some yummy empanada offered by Sudaka.
All nice and happy!
Let’s do it again, next year.

domenica 7 settembre 2014



History and Background of Ozato
  • Ozato's nickname comes from the village where it is located, Ozato Village. 
  • The actual name of Ozato is the Okinawa Prefectural Animal Protection and Control Center.
  • Ozato is a Japanese Government run animal facility (kill-shelter).
  • In 1969 Ozato was formed out of a make shift office to help control the stray population.
  • By 1977 Ozato become a government supported entity with its own facility.
  • In 1995 Ozato started holding adoption events for locals every Wednesday, which still exists today.
  • In 2005 Ozato established Animal Protections Laws to protect the animals of the island.
  • Ozato is in charge of all of the stray animals on island including outer lying islands near Okinawa, Japan.
Processing Procedures of Stray Animals
  • All stray animals picked up on the island of Okinawa, Japan go to Ozato.
  • From there Dogs/Puppies are given 5 working days to be claimed, on the 6th working day they are gassed.
  • From there Cats/Kittens are given 4 working days to be claimed, on the 5th working day they are gassed. 
  • Visitors are not allowed to view the selection of strays. If you are interested in an animal an adoption coordinator must be with you.
  • All animals meeting their final day, are gassed promptly the following morning.
  • The gassing process is very slow lasting around 20 minutes, and a very painful suffering death ensues.
  • The final process is all animals are incinerated on site at their crematorium. 

Statistical History of Animals Gassed
  • In 1992 13,606 Dogs/Puppies were gassed, with a break down of 40-60 animals daily.
  • In 1998 13,202 Dogs/Puppies were gassed, with a break down of 40-60 animals daily.
  • In 2004   7,119 Dogs/Puppies were gassed, with a break down of 22-32 animals daily.
  • In 2008   4,848 Dogs/Puppies were gassed, with a break down of 15-25 animals daily.
  • The Cat/Kitten information has not been stored, but their estimates are almost double the amount of Dogs/Puppies.
Current Statistical History as of 2009 of Animals Gassed
  • In 2009, 2,718 Dogs were captured.
  • In 2009, 569 Puppies were captured.
  • In 2009, 476 Dogs were turned in.
  • In 2009, 81 Puppies were turned in.
  • In 2009, 395 Dogs/Puppies were reunited with their owners.
  • In 2009, 315 Dogs/Puppies were adopted.
  • In 2009, 734 Dogs/Puppies were from outer lying islands.
  • In 2009, 3,868 Dogs/Puppies were gassed, with a break down of 12-20 animals daily.
  • In 2009, 2,174 Cats were captured.
  • In 2009, 1,565 Kittens were captured. 
  • In 2009, 231 Cats were turned in.
  • In 2009, 164 Kittens were turned in.
  • In 2009, 7 Cats/Kittens were reunited with their owners.
  • In 2009, 84 Cats/Kittens were adopted.
  • In 2009, 233 Cats/Kittens were from outer lying islands.
  • In 2009, 4,276 Cats/Kittens were gassed, with a break down of 14-20 animals daily.
*****The current statistics and information have been taken from the 2009-2010 Okinawa Prefectural Animal Protection and Control Center annual report which are given out in limited supply.

Of the dogs in this picture remain just...
the picture.



The governor of Okinawa Prefecture
The mayor of Naha City
Environment and health Division of Naha City

We ask the immediate stop of animals (dogs and cats) killings in Ōzato at  “Okinawa Prefectural Animal Protection and Control Center”. 

In that governmental infrastructure everyday stray cats and dogs from all Okinawa Prefecture are killed with a painful gas (CO2) inhaling: every animal suffers for TWENTY MINUTES before dying.

We believe that a civilized and modern Country as Japan should treat better its stray animals. 

For this reason we ask Okinawa’s Governor to transform Ōzato’s “Okinawa Prefectural Animal Protection and Control Center” into a FREE, public veterinarian clinic managed by volunteers that love animals. 

Their job will be of curing sick animals and sterelize them, in order to have less animals in Okinawa’s streets. We believe that is better to have less but cured animals in the streets, than just simply killing them.


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