World / Asia-Pacific

It's Abe who worsens Japan's security environment: opposition leader

(Xinhua) Updated: 2014-07-15 21:45

TOKYO - Japan's Social Democratic Party chief Tadatomo Yoshida said Tuesday that it is the Prime Minister Shinzo Abe himself who worsens the country's security environment.

The opposition leader made the remarks at the upper house Budget Committee during an open discussion on the right to exercise collective self-defense.

He said, "In order to maintain a peaceful and stable security environment, Japan should push forward dialogue with China, enhancing cooperation with South Korea and America."

"While on the contrary, Abe's controversial moves, including visiting the war-linked Yasukuni Shrine, denying the country's war aggression history and even lifting the ban on collective self- defense, have triggered strong opposition from China and South Korea. It is Abe himself who worsens Japan's security environment, " Yoshida said.

Although Abe's cabinet has made the decision to allow the country to exercise the collective self-defense right, this major defense policy shift has not won approval of many lawmakers.

In response to Abe's expression that Japan's Self Defense Force (SDF) would never plunge into aggressive war in the future, Akira Koike, a lawmaker from the Japanese Communist Party, said, "You ( Abe) once said that the definition of aggression has yet to be established in academia or in the international community. How could the public believe in a person's commitment who even don't know the meaning of aggression?"

The vague explanations on scope of collective self-defense also face objections from lawmakers.

"The move by Abe's cabinet has damaged constitutionalism fundamentally, which is close to the technique used by Nazi," Yoshida said.

Japan now still could not exercise the collective self-defense right, as it needs to prepare the legal basis to accommodate the change by revising more than 10 laws, including one on SDF operations.

Abe said during Tuesday's discussion that he would consider creating a permanent law to dispatch SDF overseas. But his remarks cause a stir even within the ruling parties, as the New Komeito, the junior coalition partner of Abe's Liberal Democratic Party, remains cautious about expanding the role of the SDF overseas.

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