The southern Japanese island chain of Okinawa has elected a new governor, in a ballot widely seen as a referendum on the presence of US forces there.
Mr Nakaima says he will negotiate over plans to relocate US forces
Hirokazu Nakaima, a candidate supported by Japan's ruling coalition, narrowly beat Keiko Itokazu, who had campaigned for a reduction in US troop numbers.
Mr Naikama won the ballot on a platform of improving the island's economy.
He has pledged to negotiate over the US presence in Okinawa. Locals living near US bases complain of noise and crime.
The US military has kept forces on the islands since World War II.
Earlier this year, the Japanese government endorsed proposals for the most significant reorganisation of US troops in Japan in decades.
Under the terms of the deal, several thousand US marines will be moved off the southern island of Okinawa to the US territory of Guam by 2014.
The US will also move its operations from the existing Futenma base - which is in a built-up area - to two new runways near Camp Schwab, in northern Okinawa.
In campaigning, Ms Itokazu, who had hoped to become Okinawa's first female governor, called for the base to be moved out of Japan altogether.
Mr Nakaima, 67, said he was opposed to the relocation plan, but did not rule it out as an option. He said he would negotiate with central government on the issue and avoid confrontation.
Election officials said he had won with 347,303 votes, just over 37,000 more than his rival.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, whose ruling coalition backed Mr Nakaima, welcomed his victory and promised to listen to the concerns of the people of Okinawa about the US presence.