INTERVIEW: Nippon Ishin Wants Serious Diet Talks on Constitutional Revision

Politics

Tokyo, July 9 (Jiji Press)--Ichiro Matsui, leader of Nippon Ishin no Kai (Japan Innovation Party), has called for earnest discussions on proposed constitutional amendments to be held at the Diet, Japan's parliament, after the upcoming election for the House of Councillors, the Diet's upper chamber.

While noting that he feels "a little bit strange" to see revisions of the top law become a key issue in the election, set for July 21, Matsui said he hopes that the constitution panels of both chambers of the Diet will hold active debates on the matter after the Upper House poll. Making serious discussions on constitutional amendments would become a promise to voters once it is debated in the election campaigns, he explained.

"If the ruling Liberal Democratic Party earnestly aims to revise the constitution, it should change the Diet's existing obsolete rule" that the constitution panels are convened with the consent from both ruling and opposition parties, he indicated.

"Opposition parties that refuse to appear for discussions on constitutional revisions or avoid such debates are giving up their duties," Matsui said.

On recent remarks by U.S. President Donald Trump that the Japan-U.S. security treaty is putting heavy burden on the U.S. side and is therefore unfair, Matsui said that it would be irresponsible to pretend not to know the view of the president of the allied country, Matsui said.

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