Kishida Aide Fired over Remarks about LGBT People


Tokyo, Feb. 4 (Jiji Press)--Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida has fired Masayoshi Arai as secretary to him over his discriminatory remarks about LGBT people and same-sex marriage, the government said Saturday.

It is unusual for a secretary to the prime minister to be dismissed over a gaffe. This is expected to deal a blow to the Kishida administration already struggling with low public approval ratings.

The gaffe underscored a lack of awareness about human rights among top government officials, experts said.

Arai told reporters off the record Friday that he hates to see LGBT people and would hate to see such people live next to him. He also said that if Japan recognizes same-sex marriage, people will abandon the country.

Speaking to reporters during a trip to Sakai, Fukui Prefecture, Saturday, Kishida said, "I take (Arai's remarks) very seriously and decided to dismiss him." He said he feels responsibility for appointing the secretary.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press