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2022 May 25 - 31 [POLITICS]

JCP and Japan bar association share recognition of importance of protecting war-renouncing Article 9

May 27, 2022

The Japanese Communist Party and the Japan Federation of Bar Associations (JFBA) on May 26 held a meeting in Tokyo and shared recognition of the importance of protecting the war-renouncing Article 9 of the Constitution.

Those who attended the meeting were, from the JFBA, President Kobayashi Motoharu, 15 vice presidents, and other officials, and from the JCP, Chair Shii Kazuo, Secretariat Head Koike Akira, Policy Commission Chair Tamura Tomoko, and seven JCP Dietmembers.

JFBA President Kobayashi said that he is keeping a watchful eye on developments in discussions on constitutional revision at the Constitution Commissions of both Diet chambers. He said that as a group of lawyers in full support of the postwar Constitution who want to protect the war-renouncing Article 9 and the Preamble upholding the constitutional principles of pacifism and international cooperation, the JFBA will play a role in increasing public awareness of the importance of the Constitution.

Shii touched on the ongoing Ukraine crisis and said that arguments that take advantage of this situation are emerging among constitutional revisionists, and that they call for strengthening Japan’s military capability and the military alliance with the U.S., enabling Japan to possess an enemy base strike capability, and revising the war-renouncing Article 9. Pointing out that these arguments will end up placing Japan in an endless, vicious cycle of military responses, he said, “What Japan should do is to gather the wisdom and power to create a peaceful region in Asia through diplomacy based on Article 9.” He stressed, “It is important to establish a framework for peace in East Asia, similar to one designed by the ASEAN, which incorporates all countries in the region.

Among items the JFBA president mentioned in the meeting was the latest Supreme Court decision which recognizes that a law not allowing Japanese nationals living abroad to vote on whether judges of the top court are qualified for the job is unconstitutional.

The JFBA president highly valued this court decision which came out on the previous day. In reply, Shii said that it is necessary for the Diet to take action without delay in line with this court ruling.

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