Abe vows constitutional reform amid protests
People's Daily Online
By Liu Junguo (People's Daily) 10:53, January 23, 2018
Tokyo (People's Daily) – Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe called for an amendment to the constitution and pledged closer ties with China during a policy speech at this year's regular legislative session on Monday.
Abe said Japan will "steadily improve our friendship (with China) from a comprehensive standpoint," The Japan Times reported. Abe also expressed a desire to cooperate with China on the Belt and Road initiative to better fulfill the needs of infrastructure in Asia.
Abe urged political parties to submit their own amendment proposals, the report said.
Reuters quoted Abe as saying he hopes to "deepen debate and move forward."
This is the 6th time for Abe to deliver a policy speech since assuming power in 2012. Abe said it is the Constitution that dictates the shape and ideal form of the country, and "we will be creating our nation, looking ahead 50 to 100 years."
On bolstering Japan's defense capabilities, Abe mentioned the Aegis missile-defense system and said Japan "will calibrate what defense capabilities are truly needed" when revising the defense ministry's plans by the end of the year.
Hundreds of people gathered near Parliament Monday in Tokyo to protest Abe's revision of Article 9 of the Constitution despite a rare heavy snowfall.
The 150-day regular session of parliament is expected to end on June 20, 2018.
(Complied by Chen Zilin)
|Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list|