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HOME  > Past issues  > 2018 March 21 - 27  > Shii: Emperor’s abdication ceremony should be held in line with constitutional principles
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2018 March 21 - 27 [POLITICS]

Shii: Emperor’s abdication ceremony should be held in line with constitutional principles

March 23, 2018
The Japanese Communist Party on March 22 submitted to the government and chairs of both Houses of the Diet the party’s written request demanding that a series of ceremonies related to the Emperor’s abdication be held in line with the principles of the Constitution of Japan.

JCP Chair Shii Kazuo announced the submission of the request at a press conference in the Diet building.

At the press conference, Shii referred to the government preparatory committee which is discussing the formation of a basic policy on abdication-related ceremonies.

Shii said that in formulating the policy, the government should work to obtain various opinions from the Diet and political parties and gain a consensus from as many political parties as possible. Shii also stressed that it is also necessary for the government to make efforts to establish a public consensus on the basic policy.

Shii pointed out that according to the basic plan under discussion, the abdication and accession ceremonies will be held in 2019 in the same way as the ceremonies took place between 1989 and 1990 after the death of Emperor Showa, which is highly controversial in light of the Constitution.

Shii said that the previous succession ceremonies were held in compliance with the former Imperial House Law and the regulations governing the accession to the imperial throne, both of which were promulgated under the pre-war Meiji Constitution that gave the Emperor absolute power. Shii said that the two laws were established in the Meiji era with the aim of deifying the Emperor and inculcating the State Shinto ideology in the public mind and were thus annulled by the current Constitution, Shii added. He went on to say, “Guidelines about imperial succession events should be set up based on the principles of the current Constitution.”

Shii noted that at the time when Emperor Akihito inherited the imperial throne, some of the ceremonial events were performed in conflict with the constitutional principles of popular sovereignty as well as of the separation of religion and politics.

In conclusion, Shii said that in the meetings with both chambers’ heads, the JCP demanded that discussion among political parties on the imperial ceremony be shelved.

Past related article:
> JCP Kasai: Emperor’s abdication should take place in line with constitutional principle [December 2, 2017]
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