16 June 2017

News Story: Anger erupts over ruling bloc's 'surprise attack' to put 'anti-conspiracy' bill to vote

People took to the streets outside the Diet building on June 14 after anger erupted over the ruling coalition's tactics to skip a committee vote on the controversial "anti-conspiracy" legislation and send the bill directly to a plenary session of the House of Councillors for a vote.

"I've never heard of such a move. It's a surprise attack," said one of the protesters gathered near the Diet building on the night of June 14 about the ruling coalition's move to vote on the controversial bill at the plenary session without holding a vote in the committee.

Protesters had already filled the sidewalks by the Diet members' office buildings in Tokyo's Chiyoda Ward shortly after 6:30 p.m., when deliberations on a censure motion against Justice Minister Katsutoshi Kaneda began. According to protest organizers, roughly 3,000 people were participating in the demonstration against the anti-conspiracy legislation as of around 7 p.m.

Union worker Yuji Iwahashi, 62, of Tokyo's Katsushika Ward said he rushed from work to join the protest.

"The government probably wanted to end the Diet session as early as possible because it didn't want opposition parties digging into a scandal involving Kake Educational Institution any further. It appears to me that the government and ruling coalition rammed through a terrible law that could destroy our democracy without deepening discussion," Iwahashi lamented.

Read the full story at The Mainichi