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Saturday, September 19, 2015, 14:18

Japan enacts new security laws

By Xinhua

Japan enacts new security laws
Japan’s ruling party lawmakers and others who supported legislation loosening post-World War II constraints on the use of force by the military, applaud after the legislation was passed in a vote by the upper house, Tokyo , Sept 19, 2015. (AP Photo/Koji Sasahara)

TOKYO - Japan abandoned its 70-year pacifism since the end of World War II as the parliament's upper house on early Saturday enacted a controversial legislation pushed forward by the government under Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

The legislation's enactment marked an overhaul in Japan's purely defensive defense posture, meaning the country could dispatch its troops overseas to engage in armed conflicts for the first time in seven decades.

However, the country's war-renouncing Constitution bans its Self-Defense Forces (SDF) from doing so or exercising the right to collective self-defense.

Over 90 percent of Japan's constitutional experts believe that the legislation violates the Japanese supreme law.

The parliament's all-powerful lower house passed the bills in July.

Under the newly enacted legislation, Japan will create a permanent law to allow its SDF to carry out logistical support missions for foreign militaries in international peacekeeping operations, and other 10 existing security-related laws will be revised.

Japan enacts new security laws
A protester holding a placard takes part in a rally against Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's security bill and his administration in front of the parliament in Tokyo, Japan, Sept 17, 2015. (Photo/Agencies)

The enactment came after major opposition parties' tactics to delay the upper house vote by filing censure motions against the prime minister and the chairman of a panel under the chamber, as well as no-confidence motions against Abe's cabinet and the chamber's speaker.

However, all of the motions were voted down as the ruling bloc that groups Abe's Liberal Democratic Party and its small partner, the Komeito Party, secured the majority in both parliament chambers.

The prime minister told reporters after the vote that the result laid necessary legislation for Japan to exercise the right to collective self-defense.

The ruling camp will continue to explain the laws to the Japanese public, Abe said.

When the Abe-led ruling bloc rammed the bills through the upper house, tens of thousands of protestors rallied around the national Diet building demanding the prime minister's resignation and the retract of the bills. Similar demonstrations were staged in other cities like Nagoya and Hiroshima.

China urged Japan to act prudently, learn lessons from history and listen to the just appeal of its people and the international community.

S Korea calls for "perfect respect"

South Korea urged Japan to maintain the spirit of the pacifist constitution after the enactment of the controversial security legislation.

The foreign ministry said in a statement on Saturday that Japan should maintain the spirit of the pacifist constitution, which has been sustained after the end of World War II, and contribute to regional peace and stability when deciding on and implementing its security and defense policy.

The ministry pointed out the "perfect respect" for a third country's sovereignty when Japan exercises the right to collective self-defense, which was specified in the revised guideline on the U.S.-Japan defense cooperation.

It said that Japan must gain call or consent from South Korea before the collective self-defense right is exercised for reasons related with South Korea's national interest and the security of the Korean Peninsula.

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