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Survey blasts Japan's constitution revision
By Jiang Zhuqing (China Daily)
Updated: 2005-11-26 05:29

The proposal by the Liberal Democratic Party of Japan to revise its pacifist constitution is "another provocation" against Asian countries that fell victim to Japanese militarism during World War II.

That is the view of about 80 per cent of the 1,000 Chinese people interviewed in a survey, whose results were released on Friday.

About 71 per cent of the respondents said such a move reveals the ambition of Japan to seek military expansion overseas, and 65 per cent people said it violated an international convention banning Japan's post-war military build-up.

The poll, conducted by the Social Survey Institute of China (SSIC), surveyed people in major cities such as Beijing, Shanghai and Chongqing by telephone.

The ruling Liberal Democratic Party passed the draft of a new constitution on Tuesday at the convention marking the 50th anniversary of its founding, reports said.

Survey blasts Japan's constitution revision
US Navy and Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force craft. Japan will once again have a 'military' in name, six decades after the United States stripped the country of the right to keep armed forces, in tis first revision of the post-World War II constitution. [AFP/file]
"(Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro) Koizumi's government is trespassing the red light," said Li Dongmin, a researcher and head of the SSIC.

"It is a perilous signal and should raise the alert of Chinese people."

According to the survey, 53 per cent of the respondents feel "nervous and disturbed," and 31 per cent "unhappy" after hearing the news about Japan's plan.

The Liberal Democratic Party's effort to lift the ban on Japan possessing a military force has formed a potential threat to the peace in Asia and the international society, as well, Li said.

About 80 per cent of the interviewees see Japan's move as an issue related to international security, not the country's internal affairs.

"Action should be taken by Chinese people and people in other Asian countries to prevent Japan from going further down this dangerous road," Li added.

More than 80 per cent of the respondents said they hope the Chinese Government lodges a protest against Japan.

"We have quite enough reasons to worry about Japan, which has violated its pacifist constitution, which renounces its right to wage war or maintain military forces," said Wu Huaizhong, a researcher at the Institute of Japanese Studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

But he said people of the two nations should regard each other seriously and strengthen bilateral exchanges by surpassing the "past sentimental imbroglio."

(China Daily 11/26/2005 page1)

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