Shii summarizes JCP efforts in extra Diet session

On December 3, the final day of the 53-day extraordinary Diet session, JCP Chair Shii Kazuo, speaking at the meeting of Japanese Communist Party Dietmembers stated that the JCP has played a significant role concerning the Niigata earthquake, Iraq, "money and politics", and diplomacy.

The Diet session ended after the three opposition parties' bill calling for the withdrawal of the Self-Defense Forces from Iraq was discarded because the ruling coalition majority opposed and turned down the opposition demand for the current Diet session to be extended.

Looking back on the Diet session, Shii said, "It showed how seriously the Liberal Democratic Party and Koizumi Cabinet have misled politics."

Shii denounced Prime Minister Koizumi Jun'ichiro for irresponsibly throwing away his accountability over the SDF dispatch and "money and politics" issues. "Let us now take the lead in actions calling for the withdrawal of the SDF without delay," Shii stressed.

Shii referred to the following three points as characteristics in the latest Diet session:

Firstly, the JCP responded to the demands of the people expressing hardships from the great the major earthquake in Niigata, and other natural disasters nationwide. Regarding assistance to earthquake-hit victims, which is essential to party activities, the JCP took part in relief activities. Its call for allotting public funds for destroyed houses was partly accepted, he added.

Secondly, we've argued for the need to end corrupt and unfair politics.

Taking up the Iraq war and the U.S. helicopter crash incident in Okinawa, the JCP criticized P.M. Koizumi for his subservience to the U.S. Also, the JCP exposed that the government and business circles, together with the Democratic Party, are railroading through a mass tax increase plan. JCP lawmakers called for ending politics in service to major corporations.

Thirdly, the JCP demanded that the government maintain a responsible foreign policy. Criticizing opinions raised from among the ruling parties and part of an opposition party that Japan must adopt "economic sanctions" against North Korea, the JCP warned that it will just undermine the channel for the resolution of the North Korea abduction issue and harm principles maintained by the six-party talks on North Korea's nuclear issue. The JCP insisted that the talks with the DPRK must continue as the only way toward solving the pending issues, Shii stated.

Shii called for tackling many problems: Iraq, the pension, the budget, the nursing insurance system, and cuts in subsidies for local administration.

Referring to the Article 9 Association's lecture meetings that attracted many in opposition to a constitutional revision, Shii stated that a major movement for peace is growing among the public. (end)

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