12 Dec 2016

Guam war reparations questioned

7:55 pm on 12 December 2016

An assistant professor of indigenous studies on Guam says he's disappointed additional funds have not been allocated by the United States to pay war reparations.

The Tumon tourist district in Hagatna, the capital of Guam.

The Tumon tourist district in Hagatna, the capital of Guam. Photo: AFP

The US senate passed a bill last week to pay reparations to native Chamorro who suffered under the Japanese occupation of Guam during the Second World war.

The assistant professor, Dr Michael Lujan Bevacqua, said the reparations would be taken from money already earmarked for the government of Guam.

"It's hard because you don't want to take away the celebration from a lot of people, but at the same time, the more you think about it the more depressing or sort of insulting it gets. The slight of hand that goes on there, where here, we recognise you for what happened to you, the atrocities, the brutality that you endured, but usually in these cases you don't compensate people with the money they would have gotten back anyways," said Michael Lujan Bevacqua

Dr Bevacqua said the reparations would be distributed from taxation paid by employees of the US federal government stationed on Guam.

Get the RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs