A heated war of words has broken out between Tokyo and a United Nations expert over a contentious bill that would criminalize conspiracies. That legislation was rammed through the Lower House on Tuesday despite raucous protests.

The government should take seriously a stern rebuke issued last week by Joe Cannataci, U.N. Special Rapporteur on the right to privacy, and rethink a hasty passage of the state-backed bill that would pave the way for a police crackdown on preparations for crimes — potentially at the expense of individual rights — opposition lawmakers told the Lower House plenary session in a last-ditch protest of the vote.

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