Diet Starts Deliberations on Religious Group Victim Aid Bill


Tokyo, Dec. 6 (Jiji Press)--The Diet, Japan's parliament, started deliberations Tuesday on a bill to help people financially exploited by religious groups, such as the Unification Church.

The bill seems likely to be enacted during the current Diet session, slated to end on Saturday, as opposition parties are showing a certain level of support for concessions offered by the ruling Liberal Democratic Party.

At a House of Representatives plenary meeting on Tuesday, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said that the bill will allow donations made under "mind control" to be canceled.

The bill calls for banning groups from using "spiritual " means to cause anxiety and make people to make donations, as well as "confusing" people, such as telling them that donations are essential. It also calls for prohibiting demanding people to take out loans to make donations.

Donations solicited through inappropriate requests and "spiritual" means could be canceled within five and 10 years, respectively.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press