Japan's new law aimed at promoting understanding of LGBTQ people and other sexual minorities went into force on Friday.

The law warns against discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

The government established a section in charge of the matter at the Cabinet Office as the law obliges it to draw up a basic plan to expand public understanding of sexual diversity and report progress once a year.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno told a news conference that people have yet to fully understand the importance of sexual diversity.

"The government will work hard to promote a society in which all people respect each other's human rights and dignity and enjoy a lively life," he said.

The law also calls for efforts to ensure all people live with peace of mind in response to concerns that men may use women's toilets by claiming to be women.

The new law is based on a bill prepared by a suprapartisan group of lawmakers in 2021. Parliament passed the bill after modifying some provisions to reflect concerns among conservative lawmakers cautious about such legislation.

However, conservative politicians are still critical of the law, while some sexual minorities are complaining that it would promote discrimination.

The new law "is nothing but an ideological law," Matsuno said, adding that such acts as men claiming to be women use women's toilets will be appropriately handled under other laws.