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Justice Minister Mayumi Moriyama said Sunday she will back a plan to triple by 2010 the number of people who pass the National Bar Examination, becoming candidates for positions as judges, prosecutors and lawyers.

“We will basically follow (the plan),” she said on a Fuji TV program.

Members of the governmental Judicial Reform Council are reportedly set to approve the plan in a final report to be submitted to the government June 12.

A House of Representatives member who formerly served as chief Cabinet secretary, Moriyama also cited a need to set up more sophisticated law schools. “I would be unhappy to see the quality (of judicial services) going downhill,” she said.

Judges, prosecutors and lawyers in Japan are required to pass the National Bar Examination.

Moriyama also said she will support another plan in the nearly finished final report to allow people to join the decision-making processes in criminal trials, which currently involve only judges.

“That’s a new and good idea,” she said.

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