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Upper house fires panel chair Kawaguchi over China trip

Japan's upper house passed a resolution Thursday dismissing Yoriko Kawaguchi, a senior lawmaker of the Liberal Democratic Party, as head of one of its standing committees over her recent trip to China, fueling tensions between the ruling and opposition camps ahead of this summer's national election.

Parties bicker as Diet to dismiss committee chair over China visit

Political bickering intensified Wednesday between the ruling and opposition camps in Japan, as the House of Councillors is expected to dismiss the chairwoman of one of its committees on Thursday after she extended her trip to China last month without Diet approval. The conflict, which could sting Prime Minister Shinzo Abe ahead of an upper house election this summer, came amid growing tension over a territorial dispute between Japan and China.

Political feud intensifies over Kawaguchi's China visit

The ruling and opposition camps in Japan intensified their conflict Wednesday over the extension of stay in China by former Foreign Minister Yoriko Kawaguchi, with the governing coalition boycotting a Diet session in a rare move that heightened tensions. The feud, which could be a sting for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe ahead of a House of Councillors election this summer, came amid a territorial dispute between Japan and China.

Hashimoto clarifies remarks on "comfort women" after flak

Osaka Mayor Toru Hashimoto on Wednesday sought to clarify his remarks on a system to recruit women into sexual servitude for Japan's soldiers during World War II, saying he personally does not condone the scheme. Two days after he made controversial remarks that the so-called comfort women were "necessary to maintain discipline" in the Japanese military, Hashimoto told reporters he simply stated a fact that people at the time had that kind of view.
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