Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said in his speech at the opening of the new Parliament session that the government needs to strengthen its economy and be more active in participating in the international peacekeeping efforts in order to adapt to the world’s “increasingly insecure environment.”
Abe vowed to establish a security council which will also serve as Japan’s national diplomatic and defense command center. The Liberal Democratic Party will also be pushing for the passage of a bill that will protect state secrets as Japan takes on more responsibility in international security issues. The prime minister also said that it’s time to revisit or reinterpret Article 9 of the country’s pacifist Constitution, so that defense troops can participate in case any of its allies are attacked. “As global inter-dependency deepens, Japan can no longer protect its own peace without actively fulfilling its responsibility to global peace and stability,” Abe said. Even if Japan is proud of its pacifist state for the past years, it’s now time to act to “protect peace into the future.”
However, some say that the LDP’s state-secret bill may also infringe on the freedom of information and access to public information. The 53-day session will last until December but this might not be enough time to pass the security bills. Their junior coalition partner, New Komeito, is against any revision to the Constitution, and may need further convincing to support the proposed security bills.
[ via AP ]
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