The ruling Liberal Democratic Party has decided to support the creation of a legal mechanism to allow only Emperor Akihito to abdicate, rather than legislation that would enable him and all future monarchs to relinquish the throne.
The decision, reached Monday during the LDP’s fourth meeting on the matter, contradicts the view of the main opposition Democratic Party, which is seeking establishment of a permanent legal mechanism for abdication.
The LDP, its junior coalition partner, Komeito, and the Democratic Party will soon begin deliberations on the abdication of the 83-year-old Emperor Akihito, following his video message in August that signaled his desire to step down due to his advanced age.
Only senior or other select LDP members have attended the meetings on the issue. Some LDP members, including Shigeru Ishiba, a former LDP secretary-general, have criticized the decision-making process as overly exclusive as the party has not held any related meetings open to all of its lawmakers.
The LDP’s decision is in line with the government’s intention to enact one-off legislation to enable Emperor Akihito’s abdication. Komeito was expected to make clear on Tuesday its preference for a one-time-only abdication mechanism.
Currently, only posthumous succession is effectively allowed as the 1947 Imperial House Law that sets out rules for Imperial affairs lacks a provision regarding abdication.
The Japanese government is planning to reduce penalties for those who plot serious crimes like terrorism but turn themselves in before actually committing them under a contentious anti-conspiracy bill it is preparing, sources close to the matter said Monday. (Kyodo)
Car-bicycle collisions accounted for about 40 pct of fatal traffic accidents in Japan last year in which passenger cars bumped into other vehicles as they encountered at intersections or other parts of the road, a National Police Agency survey has revealed. (Jiji)
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Monday sought to deny allegations that he is linked to an Osaka-based ultranationalist kindergarten as the public outcry over the operator and its alleged efforts to indoctrinate children with xenophobia and pre-war militarism grows. (Japan Times)
Manhole covers are trending high in Japan and for good reason -- they're stunning! Only in Japan are manholes to cover sewage designed so beautifully that they now make MANHOLE TRADING CARDS! (ONLY in JAPAN)