LDP Punishes Veteran Lawmaker over Abe "Traitor" Remark

Politics

Tokyo, Oct. 12 (Jiji Press)--Japan's ruling Liberal Democratic Party decided Wednesday to suspend veteran lawmaker Seiichiro Murakami from party positions for one year over his reported remark describing slain former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe as a "traitor."

The decision was made unanimously at a meeting of the party's ethics committee, according to the committee's chairman, Seiichi Eto, speaking to reporters after the meeting.

Murakami, a 70-year-old former administrative reform minister who has been elected 12 times to the House of Representatives, will be removed from his current post as a member of the party's General Council, which decides important matters related to party administration.

Expressing his opposition to Abe's state funeral, held on Sept. 27, Murakami told reporters on Sept. 20 that Abe was a "traitor who shredded the country's state finances, financial system and diplomacy and even destroyed the bureaucracy."

The remark provoked a fierce backlash from the party's largest faction, previously headed by Abe. After the faction called on the party's leadership to punish Murakami, LDP Secretary-General Toshimitsu Motegi asked the ethics committee to handle the matter.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press