Doctors supporting suit call for withdrawal of SDF from Iraq

In the northernmost Japanese prefecture of Hokkaido, from where the Ground Self-Defense Force units have been dispatched to Iraq, many doctors are standing by a former influential conservative politician who has filed a lawsuit calling for a court injunction against the SDF dispatch.

Minowa Noboru, retired Liberal Democratic Party lawmaker and ex-post and telecommunications minister, brought the case to court maintaining that sending the SDF contravenes the Constitution and the SDF law.

In March, two medical doctors launched a signature-collection campaign in support of Minowa's lawsuit. As of mid-April, more than 100 medical doctors have sent their signatures with encouraging messages.

A doctor in a message said, "As a doctor, I cannot tolerate the SDF dispatch abroad to ostensibly spare lives. I am afraid that SDF personnel might suffer from leukemia or cancer as the Iraqi people have as a result of the U.S. forces' use of depleted uranium shells." (end)

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