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1. National Review: “It Is Unconstitutional That Japanese Abroad Cannot vote”

According to NHK on May 25 reported that the Supreme Court ruled for the first time that not allowing overseas residents to vote violates the Constitution in a case involving a national review of Supreme Court justices to determine whether they are qualified. Chief Justice Naoto Otani of the Supreme Court Grand Bench noted, “The Constitution guarantees the right to national review equally as well as the right to vote, and it is not permissible in principle to restrict the right”. He added, “There is room for adopting ballots and methods that differ from those used today”. The judge ruled for the first time that the National Voting Law, which does not allow overseas voting, violates the Constitution, stating, “It is not extremely difficult to legislate to allow voting while ensuring the fairness of the examination, and there are no compelling reasons for such a measure.”

2. CCP Virus (COVID-19) Vaccine, 4th Dose Started

According to JIJI News on May 25, the fourth inoculation of the CCP virus (new coronavirus COVID-19) vaccine began on the morning of May 25 in Japan. The vaccine is intended to prevent severe cases of the disease and is limited to people aged 60 or older who have been vaccinated at least five months after the third dose and those aged 18 or older with underlying medical conditions. In the fourth round, Pfizer (US) and Moderna (US) will be used. Eligible underlying diseases include diabetes, chronic heart or liver disease, and obesity. People under 59 years of age and in good health are not eligible for the vaccination, including healthcare professionals.

3. Chief Cabinet Secretary: “An Act of Demonstration Against Japan.” Joint Flight of Communist Chinese and Russian Bombers

According to NHK on May 25, Chief Cabinet Secretary Matsuno said at a press conference, “We cannot help but regard the joint actions of the two countries as a demonstration against our country. We also note that the joint action took place during the Quad summit meeting, which increases the degree of provocation”. He also stated that he had conveyed his serious concerns to both countries through diplomatic channels, and that he had told Russia that it would be unacceptable for Russia to act in a way that would further increase tensions in East Asia amid the escalating tensions over Ukraine. He added, “We also strongly urged Communist China to play a responsible role in maintaining international peace and security, as it dared to conduct joint military drills with the Russian military while the international community is striving to stop Russia’s military aggression against Ukraine”.

4. Exhibition of the Latest EV and FCV Body and Battery Technologies in Yokohama

Reported by NHK on May 25, as competition to develop EVs (electric vehicles) and FCVs (fuel cell vehicles) intensifies toward the realization of a decarbonized society, an exhibition featuring the latest technologies related to car materials and batteries has opened in Yokohama City. The exhibition, held for the first time in three years at Pacifico Yokohama in Yokohama’s Nishi-ku, attracted approximately 500 exhibitors from Japan and abroad, including automobile and parts manufacturers. Among the exhibitors, Asahi Kasei, a chemical manufacturer, built a prototype EV to showcase its technological capabilities.

5. Resumption of Acceptance of Foreign Visitors to Japan

Since June, the government has decided to exempt some people from entry inspections, etc., and to raise the entry limit, based on three levels of outbreak status in the partner country/region and the risk of influx into Japan, Mainichi News reported on May 25. The government had not been accepting tourists but decided to resume accepting tourists because the domestic infection situation has calmed down and to boost the declining tourism industry. The government has been accepting a small number of tourists from the U.S. and other countries as a demonstration experiment since May 24th to accommodate foreign tourists. Based on the results, guidelines for accepting tourists will be established. For the time being, it is expected that tourists will be the target.

6. US and Japanese Foreign Ministers Hold Phone Calls in Response to Ballistic Missile Launch by North Korea

NHK reported on May 25 that in response to the launch of a ballistic missile by North Korea, Foreign Minister Hayashi spoke with U.S. Secretary of State Blinken and shared serious concerns about a series of nuclear and missile activities and confirmed that the Japan-U.S. alliance would work to strengthen its deterrence and response capabilities. In the telephone conversation held before noon on May 25, the two foreign ministers shared serious concerns about a series of nuclear and missile technology development activities by North Korea, including the latest missile launch, immediately after the Japan-US Summit and Quad Summit of the four countries of Japan, US, Australia, and India. They agreed that North Korea’s nuclear and missile activities threaten the peace and stability of the international community and the region, and they also agreed to continue to work closely with the three countries toward the complete denuclearization of North Korea in line with UN Security Council resolutions.

【Himalaya Japan Galaxy- Alpha Planet】

Translator: Tagomi

Proofreading: Tagomi