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The Japan Association of National Universities has said it instructed its schools across the country to remove a nationality clause for students seeking special admission after returning from abroad.

Most of the universities are expected to remove the clause to enable students who are children of Koreans with permanent residency in Japan — not only Japanese nationals — to apply through the special admission program after studying overseas.

Many national universities have a special admissions system for students who went to high schools abroad while their parents worked for their companies overseas.

The system allows applicants to skip general academic examinations by the National Center for University Entrance Examination and be evaluated based only on essays and interviews.

However, 63 of the 76 national universities currently invoke the nationality clause, which limits special applicants to those with Japanese citizenship.

The university association decided to abolish the clause after a citizens’ group promoting rights of permanent Korean residents asked the association to remove it to enable Korean students educated abroad to qualify for the special admission.

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