Politics

LDP eyes submitting Constitution proposals to Diet in fall: Abe

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Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Saturday he wants his Liberal Democratic Party to submit proposals for discussions on changing Japan's Constitution during an extraordinary Diet session likely to be convened in the fall. "I expect LDP proposals to be submitted at the Constitution commissions of the upper and lower houses… Read

Politics

Ex-top bureaucrat urges Abe to personally address favoritism claims

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The former top bureaucrat at Japan's education ministry, who played a key role in allegations of favoritism by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, has called for the prime minister to fulfill his responsibility to respond properly to the claims. Kihei Maekawa, former vice minister of education, culture, sports, science and technology,… Read

Politics

Japanese, EU leaders hail progress in free trade talks

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Japanese and European Union leaders have welcomed progress in negotiations on a free trade deal with Japan, according to a document adopted at the end of their two-day summit. "The European Council welcomes the progress achieved recently in the negotiations with Japan, which could pave the way for a political… Read

Politics

Japanese warship takes Asian guests on cruise in defiance of China

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Japan's largest warship steamed into the South China Sea this week in defiance of Chinese assertiveness, with Asian military guests on board to witness helicopters looping over the tropical waters and gunners blasting target buoys. China claims most of the energy-rich sea through which about$5 trillion in ship-borne trade passes… Read

Politics

Japanese professor to serve on U.N. panel fighting discrimination

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Keiko Ko has been elected to serve as one of nine incoming independent experts on a U.N. committee fighting discrimination, becoming the first Japanese to do so. The Nanzan University law professor garnered 132 votes, the most of any candidate. She joins two other newly elected female experts from South… Read

Politics

Iwakuni OKs plan to host U.S. carrier-based aircraft

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The Yamaguchi Prefecture city of Iwakuni expressed support Friday for a plan to bring dozens of U.S. carrier-based aircraft to the Marine Corps' Iwakuni base under an agreement reached between the Japanese and U.S. governments over the realignment of U.S. forces in 2006. Iwakuni Mayor Yoshihiko Fukuda said he decided… Read

Politics

Official campaigning kicks off for July 2 Tokyo assembly election

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Official campaigning for the Tokyo metropolitan assembly election started Friday, with all eyes on whether Gov. Yuriko Koike's fledging party will secure a majority with political forces close to her at the expense of the current largest force, the Liberal Democratic Party. The July 2 election comes on the heels… Read

Politics

Okinawa marks 72nd anniversary of fierce WWII ground battle

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Okinawa on Friday marked 72 years since the end of a fierce World War II ground battle that killed a quarter of its civilian population, with resentment running deep over the continuing burden islanders bear in hosting the bulk of U.S. military bases in Japan. Touching on a crash-landing accident… Read

Politics

LDP lawmaker to quit party over alleged abuse of secretary

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A junior lawmaker submitted an application to leave the ruling Liberal Democratic Party on Thursday, a senior party member said, following allegations that she physically and verbally abused a secretary. The LDP leadership urged second-term House of Representatives lawmaker Mayuko Toyota to leave the party, apparently to avoid an adverse… Read

Politics

Scandal clouds outlook for Abe as Tokyo election looms

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Just a few months ago, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe looked to be cruising to a third term that would make him Japan's longest serving leader and put him on track to achieving his dream of revising its post-war, pacifist constitution. But suspicions he may have helped a friend get favored… Read

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