Former Pm Comments On Constitutional Revisions

Former PM comments on constitutional revisions

Former Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi has expressed a negative view on a move to revise the Constitution next year. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is aiming to submit amendment proposals at the Diet this fall.

Koizumi met with former vice president of the Liberal Democratic Party Taku Yamasaki, former party secretary general Tsutomu Takebe and former defense minister Gen Nakatani in Tokyo on Wednesday.

They agreed that cooperation of the opposition parties will be essential in an effort to revise the Constitution, as the initiative should widely be supported by the public.

Later, Koizumi told reporters that it is impossible to revise the Constitution next year.

He said approval from more than 2 thirds of the Diet is needed to initiate constitutional amendments, so it is different from an ordinary bill that requires support from a simple majority.

Koizumi added that an issue that needs to be handled with opposition parties should not be taken up as an election issue.

He went on to say that the LDP cannot go ahead with the issue alone, in the face of protests from the opposition.

Koizumi said it is one thing to assert the constitutional revisions as the party's policy, but it is another to get it passed in the Diet.