Opposition Parties Ending Boycott of Diet over Cherry Blossom Party


Tokyo, Nov. 29 (Jiji Press)--Major Japanese opposition parties on Friday morning decided to stop boycotting parliamentary deliberations after the ruling bloc offered an explanation over a tax-funded annual cherry blossom-viewing party hosted by the prime minister.

Earlier in the morning, the opposition parties refused to take part in debates at the Diet, the country's parliament, strongly protesting against the lack of reasonable explanations from the government side over the cherry blossom party issue.

Over a letter of invitation for the 2015 cherry blossom party sent to the then chairman of Japan Life Co., which was allegedly involved in an unlawful business, the opposition camp on Thursday urged the government and the Liberal Democratic Party-led ruling coalition to disclose whether the person was included in an invitation quota allotted to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

The letter had the number "60" on its "invitation section." It is suspected that the figure may have been used to indicate an invitation based on the recommendation by the prime minister or others.

The government and the ruling bloc refused to meet the demand, prompting the opposition side to decide on boycotting Diet business from Friday. Japan Life effectively went bankrupt in 2017 after collecting massive amounts of funds from customers. It was raided by police in April this year.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press