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Protesters call for the cancellation of Japan’s Abe national mourning | News

About 62% of respondents in a recent Japanese newspaper poll said they oppose holding a state funeral for Prime Minister Abe.

Hundreds of protesters gathered in Tokyo to Request cancellation at the state funeral of former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, accusing the slain prime minister of having militaristic views.

Abe, who was was assassinated in Julywas Japan’s longest-serving leader and one of the most divisive leaders of the post-war era because of his revisionist views on wartime history, favoring a stronger military, and what critics call the autocratic and cronyist approach.

Protester Mayumi Ishida said on Friday: “Abe’s policies have supported the war, noting that Abe has always sought to increase defense spending.

Like others at the rally, Ishida said he feared Abe’s views heralded a step back to Japan’s pre-World War II era of militarism.

State Funeral in Japan has historically been reserved for emperors. The decision to keep one for Abe was made by the cabinet and not through parliament. Several groups of lawyers have challenged its legitimacy.

About 62% of respondents in a recent Mainichi newspaper poll said they opposed holding a state funeral for Prime Minister Abe.

Among the reasons respondents gave was that the former prime minister did not deserve the honor and the price was too high. The official public expense for the funeral is about 1.7 billion Japanese yen ($12 million) but experts note that hidden costs like security add up to the total.

‘Not appreciated by everyone’

Mainichi reports that the local councils of at least 12 cities in Japan have issued statements calling for the cancellation of funerals.

Katsuto Furuichi, 70, an independent member of parliament, told the newspaper: “It is tragic that former Prime Minister Abe was assassinated during the election, but his actions were not appreciated by everyone. expensive.

Several politicians have vowed to skip the funeral, including ruling party lawmaker Seiichiro Murakami, a former Cabinet minister, who said they have failed to win public support.

The government’s plan for Abe’s state funeral to be held on Tuesday has sparked public outcry against the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, which has ruled Japan for almost all of its time. post-war period.

Protests similar to Friday’s and marches against national mourning broke out across the country, drawing hundreds of people.

Earlier this week, a man set himself on fire in front of the prime minister’s residence in what was described as a suicide in apparent protest at the funeral.

Yoshiko Kamata, a part-time worker at a convenience store, admits it’s impossible to stop the state funeral, but this is an opportunity to drive home the message that Abe never stood with the people.

“We wanted to show our position,” she said, noting that dictators had been invited to state funerals.

“Just because he’s dead, we won’t forgive Abe.”

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