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HOME  > Past issues  > 2024 June 19 - 25  > 26K signatures calling for ban on arms exports submitted to gov’t
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2024 June 19 - 25 [POLITICS]

26K signatures calling for ban on arms exports submitted to gov’t

June 19, 2024

The Japan Peace Committee (JPC) on June 18 submitted a second batch of signatures of 26,366 (51,726 in total) to Prime Minister Kishida Fumio and Defense Minister Kihara Minoru, calling for a ban on all arms exports.

The JPC made representations to the Cabinet Secretariat, the Ministry of Defense, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, demanding that the present “Three Principles on Transfer of Defense Equipment and Technology” and their operational guidelines, which were adversely revised in December 2023 to allow the export of deadly weapons, be restored to their original state. Japanese Communist Party member of the House of Representatives Akamine Seiken accompanied the JPC to make the representations.

JPC Secretary General Chisaka Jun criticized the Cabinet for having revised the three principles’ operational guidelines without Diet discussions and for having lifted the ban on third-country exports of a model of the next-generation fighter jet which is under development jointly by Japan, Britain, and Italy.

A member of the Network Against Japan Arms Trade (NAJAT), who took part in the JPC representations, said, “The three principles on arms exports are a combination of popular sovereignty and pacifism and have long been Japan’s national policy. Any change in this national policy made only at Cabinet meetings should be invalid.”

Responding to a government official who insisted that Article 9 of the Japanese Constitution does not regulate the transfer of defense equipment, participants in the representations refuted, “The three principles are based on the war-renouncing Article 9.”

Past related articles:
> Conclusion of treaty on trilateral fighter jet program will turn Japan into a ‘merchant of death’ [April 26, 2024]
> Motomura: Revised ‘three principles’ allowing arms exports will increase likelihood of international conflicts [February 22, 2024]
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