Japan ruling party stands tough on territorial spat
November 21, 2012 12:49 AM EST
Japan's ruling Democratic Party will promise to do its utmost in protecting Japanese territory and putting an end to nuclear power generation by the 2030s, according to draft campaign pledges issued on Tuesday ahead of next month's election.
Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda's Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) is running far behind the biggest opposition Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) in opinion polls taken ahead of the Dec 16 parliamentary election.
"We will expand and fortify guard and vigilance carried out mainly by the coast guard, and take all possible measures to protect our land and waters, including the Senkaku islands," the draft statement, obtained by Reuters, said.
Sino-Japanese ties took a tumble after the Japanese government in September bought disputed East China Sea islets, giving a fresh headache to Noda, already tasked with leading Japan's recovery from last year's massive earthquake and tsunami and the Fukushima nuclear disaster.
The rocky, uninhabited islets, called Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China, are located near rich fishing grounds and potentially huge oil and gas reserves.
On the DPJ's energy policy, the draft said: "We will employ all policy resources available so that it will become possible to bring the number of operating nuclear reactors to zero by sometime in the 2030s."
In contrast, the LDP advocates further debate before setting a new nuclear energy policy for Japan, which depends heavily on imports for its energy needs.
The DPJ's election pledge draft also repeated existing goals in endeavouring to end deflation by the fiscal year starting April 2014 and achieving nominal economic growth of 3 percent a year on average in the years to 2020.
It also reiterated that a DPJ government will take decisive steps against excessive appreciation of the yen to prevent it from hurting Japan's export-reliant economy.
On its trade policy, the DPJ's draft said it will pursue free trade pacts such as the U.S.-led Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a controversial issue even among DPJ lawmakers.
Former Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama will not run in the December election because he will not sign a document pledging to back party policies, including support for Japan's participation in the TPP and a sales tax increase to reduce huge public debt, public broadcaster NHK reported.
Noda is insisting on candidates signing the document to try to avoid the feuds over policy that split the party in the past and led to dozens of defections in recent months.
Hatoyama, scion of a wealthy political family and a co-founder of the DPJ, quit as prime minister after less than a year in office. His support had plummeted after he first raised, then dashed, local hopes of relocating a controversial U.S. Marine airbase in Japan's southern island of Okinawa.
(Reporting by Shinji Kitamura, writing by Kiyoshi Takenaka, Linda Sieg; Editing by Ron Popeski)
Most Popular Slideshows
- Kate Middleton First Official Solo Trip: Details For Malta Tour Revealed [PHOTOS]
- 2014 MTV Video Music Awards: Full List Of Winners, Miley Cyrus ‘Wrecking Ball’ Bags Video Of The Year [PHOTOS]
- Manny Pacquiao Vs. Chris Algieri World Tour Kick Off Press Conference In Macau [PHOTOS]
- Kate Middleton’s Mom Accused Of Being A Social Climber, Prince George Not Seen By Relatives
Join the Conversation
- Tourre on stand says email in SEC case 'not accurate'
- Syrian authorities blocking access to needy in Homs - Red Cross
- Faith in European Union at low ebb, EU poll says
- Former UBS banker gets 18 months, $1 million fine, for muni bid-rigging scheme
- U.S. judge halts challenges to Detroit's bankruptcy bid
- Apple on iPhone 6 Release Date One Week After September 9 Despite Display Shortage Starting $800
- James Foley Video Had A Change Of Actor – Expert Points Out
- Canada Concerned About Russia’s Military Expansion in Arctic
- Nokia X2 vs. Nokia Lumia 530 - Specifications, Features And Price Showdown
- Hundreds of Men Rape Teen for Three Years
- Nexus 6 Release Date Will Intro Android 5.0 aka Lemon Meringue Pie with Killer Specs & Features
- Trending: Ice Bucket Challenge Replaced By Rubble Bucket Challenge By People Of Gaza