The government and ruling parties plan to extend the current extraordinary Diet session for a second time beyond its expiration Saturday. Since a decision on such an extension by the Lower House, which is controlled by the ruling coalition, takes precedence over an Upper House decision, the session is set to be extended by a month through Jan. 15.

This guarantees enactment of a bill to continue the Maritime Self-Defense Force’s mission in the Indian Ocean to refuel naval ships of the United States and other countries engaged in antiterrorism operations in and around Afghanistan.

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