A group of professors from the University of Tokyo submitted a petition to the government Tuesday opposing a bill to recognize the Hinomaru as the national flag and “Kimigayo” as its anthem, after Diet debate on the bill began the same day.

The petition, bearing the names of 86 professors from nine departments, was submitted to the Education Ministry and the Prime Minister’s Office. Another petition with 207 signatures from professors nationwide and from universities in the United States, France, South Korea and China was also sent to Diet members.

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