While concerns are rising in Japan about the new State Secret Protection bill, the ruling coalition railroaded it through the House of Councillors the first week of December, ignoring the opposition’s concerns that it will violate the public’s right to know. The lack of public support for this Secrecy Law and the growing protests against it have undoubtedly put pressure on the Abe government, which responded in excessively repressive measures against the pacific japanese protesters. 4 protesters were arrested of Dec. 5th and 6th, and while 3 of them were released before the 8th, Mr A who was arrested inside the Diet is still held under police custody. We are volunteers supporters of Mr A trying to help him regain his freedom. This is the first repression case after the approval of the State Secrets Protection bill. We call for the support of all who are involved in the movement against the Secrecy Law, to help us rescue Mr A.
After the “protesters = terrorists” statement by secretary-general Shigeru Ishiba, the security measures around the Diet were drastically increased. Riot police forces were deployed to oppress pacific prostesters, and even blocked pedestrian crossings for no valid reason. On Dec. 5th, a man who wrote “NO SECRET” on the wall of the Prime Minister’s residence was arrested. On the 6th, 2 other protestors were arrested just outside the Diet, one for arguing against the police blocking passers-by on the side walks, the other for running into police forces. And in the evening, 4 people who were hearing the plenary session from 9pm protested against the interruption of deliberations and steamrolling of the bill. Those 4 were expeled from the hall and taken in custody until late at night. Of those 4, Mr A who protested by throwing his shoes toward the Assembly was arrested for forcible obstruction of business, and is still detained at the Kojimachi police station.
Inside the Diet, the ruling coalition was raining down abuse on the opposition, intentionally obstructing the deliberations. As soon as a member of the opposition would start speaking they would start yelling loudly and hitting their desks with their fists or name badges to cover the voice of the speaker.
(movie: http://twitcasting.tv/nminoshima/movie/27697052; comments from a hearer: http://no-border.asia/archives/17256/2)
As a result, the minutes from the Special Committee Meeting for State Security of Dec. 5th end as follow: ” ….. (too many people speaking at the same time, noisy hall, impossible to discern)” → “Chairman leaves”. The disturbances were such that the last question of the opposition could not be heard, and the minutes do not mention the bill was actually voted. Accordingly, the approval of the Secrecy bill is null with respect to the Constitution. During the last plenary session of the evening of the 6th, the ruling coalition carried on its outrageous acts of obstruction. And just before 11pm, the Assembly was forcibly brought to vote the bill. Thinking this was an insult to all the people protesting outside the building, Mr A showed his dissent by throwing his shoes. Mr A’s anger was also our very own anger. Other hearers also rose their voices, and 4 protesters were conducted away from the hall and given a “lesson”. Later that night, Mr A was handed over to the Kojimachi police station.
Furthermore, when the secretary of Councilor Mizuho Fukushima, Ikeda Sachiyo asked the whereabouts of Mr A on the night of the 6th, the House of Councilors lied and said he had been “released”. Therefore, most people became aware of Mr A’s arrest brutally on the 7th, when the newspapers published the police announcement that disclosed the real name of Mr A. Together, the House of Councilors and the police failed to communicate important information, only disclosing information that would serve their purpose, and allowing them to socially eradicate dissidents. This is truly the beginning of the repression under the Secrecy Law.
Please read Mr A’s message below. In order to conceal its despotism, the government will likely decide the long-term detention and prosecution of Mr A who “disturbed the sacred Diet”. What is unacceptable, however, is the State Secret Protection Law and the despotic behaviour of the government itself. It is not Mr A but the government that must be judged. We demand Mr A’s immediate release and non-prosecution, and call for the support of journalists, academics, artists, and all people who are involved in the movement against the Secrecy Law to help us rescue Mr A.
December 8th, 2013
Asano Fumio (Lawyer), Ichinose Kenichiro (Lawyer), Ukai Satoshi (Professor at Hitotsubashi Univ.), Kaito Yuuichi (Lawyer), Molotov Tetsu (Reggae DJ), Kanbara Hajime (Lawyer), Takahashi Tetsuya (Professor at Tokyo Univ.), Tajima Yasuhiko (Professor at Sofia Univ.), Yamamoto Taro (Member of the House of Councilors), Yoshida Tetsuya (Lawyer), the Committee Supporting the Repressed Hearer of the 12.6 Secret Law Diet