Tokyo, Nov. 19 (Jiji Press)–Japan’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party is stepping up efforts to revise the Constitution, reflecting the wishes of LDP President and Prime Minister Fumio Kishida.
On Friday, the party renamed its Headquarters for the Promotion of Revision of the Constitution to the headquarters for the realization of constitutional revision, and appointed executive acting policy chief Keiji Furuya as its chairman.
The LDP also plans to establish a committee to sway public opinion in favor of constitutional revision through town hall meetings and nationwide stump tours.
The moves are aimed at displaying the LDP’s intent to revise the Constitution, which has long been a policy goal for the party.
“Let us show a strong willingness (to revise the Constitution) by changing not just the name but also the system,” Kishida said to Furuya at the prime minister’s office on Friday. “I want to deepen discussions toward constitutional revision.”
Furuya told reporters that “the main battleground is in the Diet,” or Japan’s parliament, and that “it is extremely important to cooperate with other political parties,” including Nippon Ishin no Kai (Japan Innovation Party), an opposition party supportive of constitutional revision.
Former internal affairs minister Yoshitaka Shindo, who leads the ruling camp in the Commission on the Constitution of the House of Representatives, the lower chamber of the Diet, was appointed secretary-general of the headquarters.
Furuya has long advocated constitutional revision with his close ally and former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who recently became the leader of the largest intraparty faction and is seen fully backing Furuya’s efforts.