Cabinet members may now use cellphones, smartphones and tablet computers to receive emergency notifications from their secretaries during Diet sessions, the Lower House decided Thursday.

The use of high-tech gadgets was officially forbidden during Diet sessions, but Cabinet members can now use smartphones to receive messages from bureaucrats during emergencies, such as ballistic missile launches aimed at Japan, according to the secretariat to the chamber.

Lawmakers will continue to discuss whether to lift the ban completely, as many have called for, the secretariat said.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga has argued information can be conveyed more quickly and precisely by computer than by the traditional pen-and-paper note.

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