National

Poll finds majority of people oppose pardoning of certain criminals to mark emperor's enthronement

JIJI

A majority of people in Japan oppose granting pardons for certain crimes to mark the enthronement of Emperor Naruhito earlier this year, a Jiji Press opinion survey showed.

The poll showed that 54.2 percent of respondents oppose such pardons, while 20.5 percent support them and 25.3 percent said they are not sure. The survey was conducted for four days through Monday.

The government is considering granting pardons as early as this autumn to commemorate the May 1 enthronement of the new emperor. It is expected to limit the measure to minor crimes in consideration for the feelings of victims.

In the past, authorities granted pardons on certain occasions, for example when Emperor Hirohito, posthumously called Emperor Showa, died in 1989.

Most of those opposed to the plan to pardon criminals were from among voters who supported the ruling Liberal Democratic Party and its coalition partner, Komeito, as well as the major opposition Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan and the Japanese Communist Party.

Some 54.4 percent of those asked opposed the plan to pardon criminals, and they did not support any particular political party.

The survey also found that 77.1 percent have no plans to make bulk purchases before the consumption tax is raised from 8 percent to 10 percent on Oct. 1, far higher than the 18.4 percent who have such plans.

The interview-based survey covered 2,000 people aged 18 or older across Japan. Of them, 62.3 percent gave valid responses.

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