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HOME  > Past issues  > 2017 July 19 - 25  > JCP Kasai: PM Abe should dismiss defense minister
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2017 July 19 - 25 [POLITICS]

JCP Kasai: PM Abe should dismiss defense minister

July 25, 2017
Japanese Communist Party member of the House of Representatives Kasai Akira on July 24 in a House Budget Committee meeting demanded that Prime Minister Abe Shinzo dismiss Defense Minister Inada Tomomi who is suspected of concealing “daily reports” compiled by the Ground Self-Defense Force in regard to the UN peacekeeping mission in South Sudan.

The DM’s dismissal has been demanded by the Japanese Communist, Democratic, Liberal, and Social Democratic parties. PM Abe refused again the four parties’ demand to dismiss DM Inada.

In the meeting, Inada denied her involvement in the concealment of the daily reports, saying, “I never approved of covering up the GSDF’s daily reports and withholding the reports from the public.” However, DM Inada was questioned by the Inspector General’s Office of Legal Compliance over her role in the alleged cover-up.

Kasai criticized DM Inada, saying, “It is an unprecedented scandal. The sitting defense minister is suspected of involvement in the cover-up scandal and was interviewed by a special defense investigation team. This clearly shows that Inada is not qualified as a minister.”

The JCP lawmaker condemned PM Abe for not dismissing Inada and questioned PM Abe’s involvement in the hiding of the GSDF’s daily reports. Kasai pointed out that PM Abe met with Administrative Vice-Minister of Defense Kuroe Tetsuro in January this year when GSDF Chief Okabe Toshiya received a report that the Ground Staff Office retained data of the GSDF’s daily reports which the SDF has insisted it had discarded. Kasai asked PM Abe, “Did you give Kuroe instructions to deal with the report?” PM Abe in his reply only said, “I was never informed that the daily reports data was kept in the SDF’s office. Since the allegation is currently under special defense investigation, I will wait for a result of the investigation.”

Kasai said, “It is unacceptable for PM Abe to use the special defense investigtion as an excuse to not explain about his involvement in the cover-up scandal,” and insisted that the Diet should uncover the truth. Kasai demanded that the Diet summon DM Inada who is under a cloud of suspicion of involvement in the cover-up, Administrative Vice-Minister of Defense Kuroe Tetsuro, and GSDF Chief Okabe Toshiya as sworn witnesses.

Past related articles:
> 4 opposition parties demand PM Abe remove DM Inada from Cabinet [June 30, 2017]
> Despite knowing South Sudan was experiencing in combat situation, gov’t kept GSDF there [June 22, 2017]
> GSDF concealed daily reports on South Sudan PKO [March 17, 2017]
> Gov’t doesn’t use term ‘combat’ for constitutional reasons: DefMin [February 10, 2017]
> Concealed SDF reports imply need for withdrawal from South Sudan [February 8, 2017]
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