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Momii under fire again to step down as NHK president

  • 2015-02-12 15:00:00
  • , Asahi
  • Translation

(Asahi: February 11, 2015 – p. 31)


 The president of public broadcaster Japan Broadcasting Corp. (NHK) faced fresh calls to resign for comments he made about “comfort women” that reflect his pro-government stance.


 The Japan Congress of Journalists and a citizens group, “Hoso o Kataru Kai” (Gathering to discuss broadcasting), argued Feb. 10 that Katsuto Momii’s latest remark showed he still believes NHK should create programs in line with government policy.


 “The (Abe) administration’s official position toward the (comfort women) issue is still unknown to us,” Momii said during a Feb. 5 news conference in response to a question about whether NHK will cover the controversy over women forced to provide sex to wartime Japanese soldiers. “We have to carefully consider whether it is appropriate to report on the problem now.”


 The two activist groups jointly submitted a statement to NHK demanding that Momii step down immediately.


 They also called on the NHK Board of Governors to fire him.


 Separately, on Feb. 10, a group called “NHK o Kanshi Gekirei Suru Shichosha Community” (Viewers’ community to monitor NHK) handed over a written complaint to the NHK Board of Governors calling on them to dismiss Momii.


 The complaint also demands that Kenichiro Hamada, chairman of the Board of Governors, resign, if the governors fail to take action against Momii.


 The governors board held a regular meeting the same day, but Momii did not attend the session.


 “We exchanged opinions (about Momii’s latest comments),” said Hamada. “We will make clear the board’s view on the issue after asking him what he intended by his remarks.”


 “I felt it is regrettable after seeing the wording (in the president’s remarks),” said Tatsuo Uemura, acting chairman of the board. “The chairman promised he will ask the president about his true intentions.” (Translated by Asahi/Edited by MATT)

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