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Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has voiced reluctance to compromise on the substance of constitutional amendments, emphasizing his commitment to the ambitious goal of altering the war-renouncing Article 9 and its perceived incompatibility with the Self-Defense Forces.

In an exclusive interview with The Japan Times on Friday, Abe also stressed that his avenue for dialogue with South Korea and China “remains always open” as he seeks to straighten out historical and territorial rows complicating Japan’s ties with its neighbors.

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