Members of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's Cabinet on Tuesday voiced their approval for using the prewar Imperial Rescript on Education as a teaching material, drawing criticism that the government is trying to bring back antiquated values.

While the 1890 edict, which was used to promote Emperor-oriented and militaristic education before and during World War II, was abolished by the Diet in 1948, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told a news conference the government should allow for its use "under careful consideration so that it does not violate the Constitution and the basic education law."

"I see no problem in it being used as a teaching material from the standpoint of teaching historical background and other things," education minister Hirokazu Matsuno said in a separate news conference.