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Subcommittee and Cabinet Division approve a revised draft of the Special Measures Act on the Promotion of Solving the Northern Territories Issue

May 19, 2009

The LDP's Cabinet Division of the Policy Research Council and the Subcommittee on the Northern Territories held a joint meeting May 19 and approved a revised draft of the Special Measures Act on the Promotion of Solving Northern Territories Issue. If passed, it will be the first revision since its enactment in 1982.

The proposed new act aims to elevate the northern territories issue to a national level by providing the framework for full-scale negotiations between Japan and Russia. The main revision points are: a) a categorical statement that the northern territories are Japanese owned; b) clarification of the government's role in the movement to resolve the issue; c) introduction of various initiatives such as personal exchange; d) promotion and dissemination of information about the northern territories issue in school curricula and broader social education; e) to encourage younger generation to take part in the campaign for the restoration of the northern territories to Japan, and f) to introduce measures that allow Japanese fishermen to fish safely in the territorial waters of the northern islands.

The LDP hopes to have this draft legislation passed in the current Diet session.

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