Constitution does not specifically ban Japan’s use of nuclear weapons: Cabinet official


Japan’s Constitution does not necessarily ban the use of nuclear weapons, Yusuke Yokobatake, director-general of the Cabinet Legislation Bureau, said Friday.

“We don’t think that the use of all kinds of nuclear weapons is prohibited under the Constitution,” the head of the constitutional watchdog told the House of Councilors’ Budget Committee in response to a question from Shinkun Haku of the opposition Democratic Party of Japan.

But “the use of weapons, not just nuclear arms, is restricted under domestic and international laws,” Yokobatake also said, adding that the use of nuclear weapons by Japan is unrealistic.

The remarks may cause repercussions at home and abroad, although they are in line with the government’s past statements, including a 1959 remark by former Prime Minister Nobusuke Kishi.

The government sticks to the country’s nonnuclear principles of not possessing, not producing and not allowing the entry of nuclear weapons into the country.

At a press conference the same day, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga flatly denied the possibility of Japan using a nuclear weapon. “The government does not think of such a thing at all,” he said.

During the parliamentary meeting, the DPJ lawmaker also asked whether it is possible for Japan to use a nuclear weapon overseas as it engages in collective self-defense, or uses force to help an ally under attack.

Yokobatake denied the possibility. “There has been no change in our view that we cannot send overseas a force that is beyond the minimum required to defend our country,” he said.

  • 151E

    Don’t know what Yokobatake has been reading, but I doubt it was the constitution.

    ARTICLE 9. (1) Aspiring sincerely to an international peace based on justice and order, the Japanese people forever renounce war as a sovereign right of the nation and the threat or use of force as means of settling international disputes. (2) In order to accomplish the aim of the preceding paragraph, land, sea, and air forces, as well as other war potential, will never be maintained. The right of belligerency of the state will not be recognized.

  • Mesto Spb

    Japan has a right to defend itself.A US economic interests are changeable. And now, North Korea still exists and manufactures nuclear weapons because the US is not a few of those who are not interested. Before the US outside the range of North Korea’s nuclear weapons. And Japan is within range. For the US, it is an occasion to put antimissle defense against China. Well, the Japanese what to do?
    Nuclear weapons are a bad thing, but if the US continues to ignore the region and think only of their own advantage, only nuclear weapons to protect Japan. And from North Korea and from China and from Russia.Yes, this is the last way to protect yourself. But Japan should be technologically ready for it.The United States is far and 15 thousand American soldiers will not protect Japan from North Korea’s brutal army. Especially against the background of the fact that South Korea can not believe in the seriousness of the Red Threat. They have forgotten the experience of Russia – where “red” destroyed “white” Russian “red” – Russian “white”. Killed millions like during the Civil War and in the Gulag. Only Japan has saved million and a half “white.” But Koreans instead of dialogue to amuse populist “Patriots” over the Liancourt Islands. In the meantime, work factory produced missiles and nukes in North Korea.