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July 10 2017

mr-absentia

Yesterday’s demonstration in Shinjuku, Tokyo. The controversial anti-conspiracy law will take effect tomorrow in Japan. photo: twitter user @extensioplena

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June 25 2017

mr-absentia
  • New Japanese Anti-Terror Law Could Hurt Social Trust, Lead to Self-Censorship (Sputnik International, Jun. 16 2017)

    “A controversial ‘anti-conspiracy’ law passed by Japan’s parliament on Thursday could damage mutual trust between Japanese people and lead many to enact self-censorship, experts told Sputnik.”

  • Japan Could Launch Wave of 'Mass Surveillance' Amid New Security Bill - Snowden (Sputnik International, Jun. 1 2017)

    “Japanese citizens could face a wave of ‘mass surveillance’ amid government efforts to adopt a bill that could strengthen police powers to enhance counterterrorism measures, US National Security Agency (NSA) whistleblower Edward Snowden told the Japanese Kyodo news agency in an interview.

    The whistleblower added that the consequences for Japanese society could be even more severe if the adopted bill would coincide with the use of the XKEYSCORE data collection system.

    ‘This is the beginning of a new wave of mass surveillance in Japan,’ Snowden said.

    According to him, the situation in the Asian country was reminiscent of the security situation in the United States shortly after 9/11.”

June 17 2017

mr-absentia
mr-absentia
mr-absentia
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Al Jazeera: Protests in Japan as anti-conspiracy bill passed

“Despite resistance from the opposition bloc, the bill was approved after more than 17 hours of debate. The bill writes 277 new crimes into law.”

But the opposition says many are petty crimes, targeting regular citizens, such as copyright violations or even stealing lumber from forests.”

“The government says the bill is part of the international joint effort against crime ahead of the 2020 Olympic Games.

After the parliamentary vote on Thursday, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told reporters the law seeks to protect Japanese citizens and is part of the Convention on Transnational Organized Crime, ‘to prevent terrorism before it happens’.

But critics say it's an abuse of power and an unconstitutional attack on freedom of expression.

‘This legislation is the perfect example of how the government is using counterterrorism as an excuse for mass-surveilance of ordinary citizens and activists, trying to re-militarise the country and crackdown on dissidents,’ Tokyo resident, Lisa Torio, told Al Jazeera.”

“In an interview with Kyodo News earlier this month, US whistleblower Edward Snowden called the bill ‘the beginning of a new wave of mass-surveillance in Japan’.

‘This is a normalisation of a surveillance culture, that has not previously existed in Japan in public’, he said.”

Reposted byjapanica japanica

June 16 2017

mr-absentia

early warning signs of fascism: “obsession with crime & punishment” and “rampant cronyism & corruption” - these are what’s happening now in Japan.

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Reposted byjapanicaSzczurekCaptain-Chaos

June 15 2017

mr-absentia

Japan accused of stifling freedom with new terror law - CNN.com

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“Under the new laws, it will make it illegal to plan to commit 277 criminal actions, from arson to copyright infringement.

Koichi Nakano, political science professor at Tokyo's Sophia University, told CNN the new legislation ‘fundamentally’ changed Japan's legal system. ‘Unless a crime in committed in Japan, you don't get punished ... now if they think you are thinking of preparing to commit a crime, even before you're arrested, you'll be put under surveillance,’ he said.

‘It leads to a substantial expansion of police power to investigate people and put them under surveillance.’

Nakano compared the new legislation to the Peace Prevention Law enacted in Japan in 1925, which led to the country's infamous Thought Police.

‘At that time, they reassured people that ordinary people won't be affected. But the law was abused, it persecuted communists, and then religious leaders, leaders and ordinary people,’ he said.”

“Jeff Kingston, Asian Studies director at Japan's Temple University, told CNN Abe was using fear to crack down on Japanese society.

‘The government has been trying to use extensive fear mongering as a way to justify curbing civil liberties and putting democracy in handcuffs,’ he said.

‘They are giving the police extensive powers and criminalizing things that ought not to be a crime in a democracy.’

The laws have provoked protests since December, growing in intensity over recent weeks, after the extent of Abe's new laws became public knowledge.”

Reposted byjapanicaRekrut-KMerelyGiftedadremdico
mr-absentia

Japan rams through contentious anti-conspiracy bill - France 24

“The legislation would criminalise plotting and preparing to commit 277 ‘serious crimes’ that critics such as the Japan Federation of Bar Associations note include acts with no obvious connection to terrorism or organised crime, such as sit-ins to protest construction of apartment buildings or copying music.

Opponents see the legislation as part of a broader agenda by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to increase state powers and fear ordinary citizens could be targeted, despite government assurances to the contrary.

Combined with a widening of legal wiretapping and the reluctance of courts to limit police surveillance powers, the changes could deter grassroots opposition to government policies, critics say.

To try to speed up passage of the law, the ruling bloc took the rare, contentious step of skipping a vote in an upper house committee and moving directly to a vote in the full upper house.

The U.N. special rapporteur on the right to privacy, Joseph Cannataci, wrote to Abe last month asking him to address the risk that the changes could ‘lead to undue restrictions to the rights to privacy and to freedom of expression’.

In an email to Reuters, Cannataci said the Japanese government had used ‘the psychology of fear’ to push through ‘defective legislation’.

‘Japan needs to improve its safeguards for privacy, now even more so that this supsicious piece of legislation has been put on the statute books,’ he said in the email.

Critics say gathering information on possible plots would require expanded police surveillance, and the legislation has been compared to Japan’s ‘thought police’, who before and during World War Two had broad powers to investigate political groups seen as a threat to public order.”

Reposted byjapanicaMerelyGifted
mr-absentia

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BBC News: Japan passes controversial anti-terror conspiracy law

What changes with the new law?

The law, which criminalises the plotting and committing of 277 acts, amends an existing law against organised crime syndicates.

It bans the procurement of funds or supplies and the surveying of a location in preparation of any of these offences.

An entire group - defined as two or more people - can be charged if at least one member is found to have been plotting the crime.

It also bans the expansion or maintenance of illicit interests of organised crime groups.

Japan has signed a UN convention against transnational organised crime, but not yet ratified it. The government said the new law was needed for ratification to go ahead.

Mr Abe told reporters the law would allow Japan to ‘firmly cooperate with international society to prevent terrorism’.

What kind of crimes are on the list?

The ruling bloc has been attempting to push through the legislation for months. An earlier draft had listed 676 crimes, but it was pared down to 277.

The law bans the plotting of serious crimes such as terrorism but also lesser offences such as;

  • Copying music
  • Conducting sit-ins to protest against the construction of apartment buildings
  • Using forged stamps
  • Competing in a motor boat race without a licence
  • Mushroom picking in conservation forests
  • Avoiding paying consumption tax

Why are critics objecting?

Though the government has promised that the law will not be used unfairly, critics remain unconvinced.

They say the law is too broadly worded and gives the authorities sweeping powers.

They have also questioned the inclusion of certain acts and asked how they could be linked to terrorism and organised crime.

The government argues some could be used in association with criminal operations - for example, a gang or terror cell could fund its operations from the sale of illegally picked mushrooms.

But an editorial by newspaper The Mainichi said this argument was ‘unconvincing’, as many other possible illegal sources of revenue such as marine poaching are not included on the list.

‘While the sale of such seafood may also bring profits, that is not subject to the anti-conspiracy bill. What sets seafood apart from blessings from the mountains?’ it said.

Critics have also taken issue with the way the bill was pushed through, as the ruling bloc took the unusual step of bypassing certain formalities to ensure it would be speedily passed.

They have accused the government of steamrolling the opposition, and questioned whether this was aimed at protecting Mr Abe from being grilled on a brewing political scandal.

An opposition party recently accused the prime minister of influencing a government decision to fund and approve a veterinary school at a university owned by Mr Abe's friend.

Mr Abe has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing.”

Reposted byjapanica02mydafsoup-01MerelyGifted
mr-absentia

May 25 2017

mr-absentia

“On Tuesday, Japan's House of Representatives, approved the so-called ‘conspiracy bill,’ which lists 277 new types of offenses which lawmakers say threaten Japanese national security.

Tokyo argues the legislation needs to be adopted ahead of the Tokyo Olympics in 2020 to fight terrorism and organized crime. The Japanese government also says that the bill is necessary to ratify United Nations' Convention against Transnational Organized Crime.

Opponents of the new measures argue that the government will now be able to prosecute those who have nothing to do with terrorism or serious crime enterprises. Critics further fear the legislation could equate such offenses as sit-in protests and violations of copyrights to ‘serious crimes.’

The proposed bill needs to be ratified by the upper house, the House of Councillors, before it becomes a law. It is expected to be enacted as the ruling coalition also has a majority in the upper house.

Recalling the Japanese police state policies of the 1930-1940’s, thousands of Japanese took to the streets to decry the erosion of their civil liberties and to protest increased police powers.

Protesters carried placards condemning Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s government. They also chanted slogans venting their opposition to several other issues, including Japan's nuclear power policies, the American presence in Okinawa and an increase in the hourly wage.”

Thousands protest Japan’s controversial ‘anti-conspiracy bill’ (PHOTOS, VIDEO) (RT News, May 25 2017)

Reposted byjapanica japanica

May 20 2017

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mr-absentia
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Tokyo, Japan - protest against the passage of the anti-conspiracy bill (共謀罪法案) at the lower house of the Diet, May 19 2017. This video features speeches by the leaders of major opposition parties.

Reposted byjapanica japanica
mr-absentia

Japan cabinet approves anti-conspiracy bill amid civil rights concerns

“ [Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide] Suga said the legislation would apply only to groups preparing to commit terrorist acts and other organised crime groups and would not target the ‘legitimate activities’ of civil groups or labour unions.

Opponents, including the Japan Federation of Bar Associations, have doubts. They view the proposed change as part of Abe's agenda to tighten control at the expense of individual rights, chilling grassroots opposition to government policies such as the construction of a U.S. military base on Okinawa island.

‘It is very clear that the Japanese public security sector – police and prosecutors – employ an extremely expansive interpretation of any aspect of criminal law so ... regardless of the limited list of potential crimes, they will interpret it in an extremely elastic way,’ said Lawrence Repeta, a law professor at Meiji University in Tokyo.

The lawyers' association has said Japanese law already prohibits preparations to commit certain serious crimes such as murder, arson and counterfeiting or plotting an insurgency or the use of explosives, so additional legislation is unnecessary.”

Reposted byRekrut-Kjapanica
mr-absentia

「共謀罪」強行採決 違憲法案を力で押し通す暴挙

刑法の大原則を覆す危険

犯罪が起こっていない段階でも2人以上が犯罪を「計画」し、「準備」したと捜査機関が判断すれば、取り締まり、処罰の対象にする「共謀罪」法案は、日本の近代刑法体系の大原則を覆すものです。

近代刑法は、犯罪があって具体的な被害が生じた場合に初めて処罰することを基本原則にしています。ところが「共謀罪」は、「犯罪をしようと相談しているらしい」と警察がみなせば、捜査が開始され、処罰されるというものです。対象とする罪は277にも及びます。文字通り日本の刑法体系の大転換につながる悪法です。

政府は「対象は組織的犯罪集団」「一般人は関係ない」と繰り返しますが、そんな歯止めはまったくないことが、国会審議の中で次々と浮き彫りになっています。

どんな団体や個人を対象にするかを決めるのは警察です。その警察はいまでも恣意(しい)的な判断によって、秘密裏に一般市民に対する尾行や盗撮などを行って、病歴・学歴を含む詳細な情報を収集する人権侵害にあたる違法捜査をしており、そのことを「通常業務の一環」などと正当化しています。

そんな警察が、「話し合った」「準備をした」ことで捜査・処罰できる「共謀罪」を手にしたらどんな事態になるか。「犯罪を話し合った」証拠を手に入れるために、いまよりはるかに早い段階で範囲も広げた捜査を行うことを可能にします。「実行準備行為」は、ATMでお金を下ろすなどの日常行為と違いがないため、その行為の目的を捜査するとして「内心」に踏み込むことは避けられません。「話し合い」を調べるとして電話やメール、LINEなどのやりとりも常に監視される危険もあります。集会やパレードなどの参加者への不当な監視にお墨付きを与え、いっそうの強化につながりかねません。

憲法が保障する、思想・良心の自由(19条)、集会・結社・表現の自由、通信の秘密(21条)などに根本から反する「共謀罪」法案は廃案にするしかありません”

May 18 2017

mr-absentia

May 17 2017

mr-absentia
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Tokyo, Japan - protest rally against a bill that would criminalize “prepatation for terrorist act”, May 16 2017.

According to the current criminal code of Japan, a person cannot, in principle, be charged for criminal offense unless the person is alleged to have ACTUALLY performed a criminal act under the code. The proposed bill, however, would virtually change this principle: even a consultation on some criminal act between/among persons - conspiracy - could be held accountable before the court of law. The number of crimes fallen under the bill is over 200. The Japanese government says this is a necesseary measure to prevent terrorism for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Copyright violation, for example, is also within the scope of the bill. If online surveillance broadened, this would be an effective tool to suppress anti-government campaign on the web - just clicking on “retweet” or “like” button on Twitter might lead to conviction.

Reposted byseverakstrzepyjapanica
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