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HOME  > Past issues  > 2022 July 20 - 26  > Cabinet decision on 'state funeral' conflicts with democracy and rule of law
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2022 July 20 - 26 TOP3 [POLITICS]

Cabinet decision on 'state funeral' conflicts with democracy and rule of law

July 26, 2022

Japanese Communist Party Secretariat Head Koike Akira on July 25 said that a "state funeral" for former Prime Minister Abe Shinzo has no legal basis, and that the decision the Cabinet made without Diet approval to hold a state funeral is trampling upon democracy and the rule of law.

Asked about his views on the Cabinet decision on the holding of the funeral, Koike in the Diet building told the press that the state funeral will lead to Abe's political stance being praised and will impose a need to express condolences on the general public.

Koike recalled a Diet discussion held on May 9, 1968 between the then Lower House member of the Socialist Party, Tanaka Takeo, and the then Finance Minister, Mizuta Mikio, at a House of Representatives Audit Committee meeting regarding a state funeral for former PM Yoshida Shigeru. Koike said that FM Mizuta had responded to Tanaka that the funeral has no legal ground and some criteria will be necessary for future state funerals.

Koike said, "However, the government at that time could not establish any criteria. So, no state funeral has taken place since Yoshida's state funeral. Despite this background, the present Cabinet decided to host a government-funded funeral. This is a major problem in terms of democracy and the rule of law."

Koike pointed out that there was a state funeral decree under the former Constitution of the Empire of Japan as an Imperial edict, and that the decree became void with the promulgation of the present Constitution in 1947. He said, "The postwar government probably judged that the decree is unconstitutional."

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