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HOME  > Past issues  > 2007 October 31 - November 6  > Ozawa declares his intention to resign as DPJ president
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2007 October 31 - November 6 [POLITICS]

Ozawa declares his intention to resign as DPJ president

November 5, 2007
Ozawa Ichiro of the Democratic Party has said he wants to resign as party president to “take responsibility for the political chaos” he caused following his closed-door meetings with Prime Minister Fukuda Yasuo on October 30 and November 2 in which the two leaders discussed what might be called a “grand coalition” between the main ruling party and the largest opposition party.

On November 4, Ozawa held a news conference at DPJ headquarters and explained that the DPJ leadership’s opposition to holding “power-sharing talks” with the LDP “amounts to a non-confidence vote against me as the DPJ president.”

Ozawa said that Fukuda had assured him (1) that the Self-Defense Forces would be allowed to take part in activities authorized by the U.N. Security Council or the U.N. General Assembly GA and (2) that he would not stick to a new anti-terrorism special measures law if the establishment of a “grand coalition” is possible.

“I personally thought that policy talks should be started from these issues,” Ozawa said.

DPJ Secretary General Hatoyama Yukio later in the day told reporters that the DPJ leadership intends to persuade Ozawa to retract his intention to resign.

JCP Chair Shii criticizes Ozawa

Japanese Communist Party Chair Shii Kazuo called a news conference on the same day to comment on Ozawa’s announcement of his intention to resign as DPJ president as follows:

I think that DPJ President Ozawa expressed his intention to resign because he had failed to go ahead with talks with the LDP aimed at establishing a coalition government as discussed in the recent closed-door talks with Prime Minister Fukuda.

Given the fact that in the House of Councilors election, the DPJ campaigned for “opposition to LDP-Komei” government, its move toward joining forces with the LDP is tantamount to betraying the understanding of the public as expressed in the election. The recent action by Ozawa shows that he is not qualified to be a party leader.

Mr Fukuda and Mr Ozawa behind closed doors discussed starting talks on a coalition government. The DPJ is to blame for approving of such talks that have taken place repeatedly.

The DPJ must not repeat such action that betray the popular expectations as expressed in the election.

The LDP is called upon to accept the severe verdict it was given in the House of Councilors election and make a critical review of its past politics in order to carry out policy changes. The task is for the LDP as a ruling party to publicly discuss basic national policies and seek a popular judgment in the House of Representatives general election. This is what the LDP should do if it is a democratic ruling party.

Seeking a grand coalition simply to win a numbers game instead of reflecting on or moving away from its past policies is an act disregarding the popular will as expressed in the election.

In the present political situation, the JCP will try hard to fulfill its task of opposing the Fukuda government’s policies and ending LDP rule. Now is the time for the JCP to do everything it can to force changes in policies.
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