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  • Asahi & AFP on GOJ proposals re observing Hague Child Abduction Treaty, more loopholes such as NJ DV, and even bonus racist imagery

    Posted by arudou debito on March 12th, 2012

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    Hi Blog. On what looks to be the end game regarding Japan signing the Hague Treaty on International Child Abductions, here’s a quickie article saying Japan’s probably gonna do it.

    Japan moves closer to child custody pact
    (AFP) – March 9, 2010, courtesy of this Google link, h/t to TA

    TOKYO — Japan’s government on Friday approved a bill to join a pact on settling cross-border child custody rows, opening the way for its adoption after years of foreign pressure.
    The cabinet approved the bill that would mean Japan signing the 1980 Hague Convention. It would extend custody rights to non-Japanese parents whose children are moved to Japan by their former spouse.
    The bill is now set to be debated in parliament.
    Japan is the only major industrial nation that has not signed the treaty and has been pressured in recent years by the United States and other countries to do so.
    Japanese courts almost never grant custody to foreign parents, particularly fathers, when international marriages break up.  ENDS

    Nice how it’s pretty much background information by now that “Japanese courts almost never grant custody to foreign parents, particularly fathers“, which in fact can be grounded in statistics.  Now contrast that with the invective that one sees time and again in the Japanese media and GOJ debates, where we have the appearance of victimized Japanese females being harassed by NJ males (including even the threat of domestic violence), when in fact child abduction and parental alienation happens between Japanese too, given that there is no joint custody or guaranteed visitation rights in Japan. Check out this article below from the Asahi last January. Bonus:  The newspaper’s pictorially racist portrayal of the non-Distaff Side of the international couple.  And that’s before you even get to the unlikely prospect of Japan actually ever enforcing the Hague (see here also), just like it never enforces the UN Convention on Racial Discrimination.  The discourse will continue as such.  Arudou Debito

    =================================

    Child-custody procedures proposed, but conditions apply
    Asahi Shimbun, January 12, 2012
    By TSUYOSHI TAMURA / Staff Writer

    http://ajw.asahi.com/article/behind_news/social_affairs/AJ201201240044

    In an outline of procedures for the Hague Convention on international child-custody disputes, a government panel has proposed allowing court officials to forcibly remove a child from a Japanese parent to return him or her to the country of habitual residence.

    In its draft proposal on Jan. 23, a subcommittee of the Legislative Council, an advisory panel to the justice minister, also said the child will not have to be returned if he or she may face violence from the parent back in the other country.

    Japan has been under pressure to join the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction, which is designed mainly to deal with cross-border “abductions” by parents following broken international marriages.

    The government plans to draw up a bill for domestic procedures based on the panel’s proposal and seek Diet approval during the ordinary session that opened on Jan. 24.

    The United States and European countries have been pressing Japan to join the Hague Convention. Passage of the bill will pave the way for Japan’s accession.

    But it is still unclear whether the bill will pass the Diet because some lawmakers, both in the ruling and opposition parties, are opposed and the government has other priority legislation, such as the consumption tax hike.

    The convention stipulates that it is not necessary to return a child if there is a significant risk that the child will suffer damage physically and/or mentally.

    The subcommittee proposed that factors, such as the risk that the child will face violence back in the country of habitual residence and a situation in which it is difficult for the parents to take custody of the child, be considered.

    Specific cases cited include: the parent demanding custody of the child commits acts of violence against the other parent in front of the child; the parent in a foreign country is addicted to drugs or alcohol; and the Japanese parent who returns with the child may be arrested.

    A family court, in Tokyo or Osaka, will be responsible for deciding whether a child will have to be returned. Hearings will be held behind closed doors.

    If a Japanese parent refuses the decision to return the child to the country of habitual residence, the court will order him or her to make a monetary payment. If the parent refuses to comply, the court will seize his or her property.

    If the parent refuses to hand over the child for two weeks, court execution officers may forcibly remove the child from the parent.

    The execution officers will be authorized to persuade parents to obey the court order and search for children. If they encounter resistance from parents, they can ask for support from the police.

    These procedures will only cover cases that occur after Japan joins the Hague Convention and will not apply retroactively.

    The Justice Ministry estimates that Japan will handle several dozen cases a year.

    “I am afraid that children might be returned unconditionally unless detailed standards are established, including consideration of psychological violence,” Michiko Kanazumi, a lawyer familiar with domestic violence cases, said.

    Kanazumi also said experts will have to be present when execution officers remove the child from the parent.

    “When they suddenly try to remove the child, he or she will cry and resist,” she said.
    ENDS

    22 Responses to “Asahi & AFP on GOJ proposals re observing Hague Child Abduction Treaty, more loopholes such as NJ DV, and even bonus racist imagery”

    1. Scott T. Hards Says:

      “Bonus: The newspaper’s pictorially racist portrayal of the non-Distaff Side of the international couple.”

      I suspect I’m not the only person who is completely unable to find even the slightest hint of anything that can fairly be called “racism” in this illustration. What, the guy’s nose? I suppose if that is the problem you could also describe standard public bathroom door symbols as “sexist” since they portray the woman in a skirt.

    2. TJJ Says:

      “When they suddenly try to remove the child, he or she will cry and resist,” she said.

      Shocking. Like when you try to get a child to take a bath?

    3. Fred Says:

      I for one can find something racist about it. Yeah, like the emphasis on the guys nose and overexagerated gesturing, often mimicked by Japanese. What country have you been residing in?

    4. Bitter Valley Says:

      What’s in an image?
      I too feel that the loopholes will be stitch-up as Japanese courts will be given carte blanche to rule that any family row can be interpreted as “DV.” All this panders to the jealously guarded tropes that many in Japan would rather believe (and many have gotten past or don’t believe in as well-granted) of the violent and emotional gaijin who does not understand Japanese culture and “wa,” etc.

      Related inferences are as the poor Japanese woman as the innocent victim (as we all know, in a row or a divorce, in an argument or a disagreement, it takes two to tango) of the row, the divorce, the disagreement, etc. reinforcing the idea of the emotional or violent or misunderstanding gaijin husband.

      Behind that of course, there is the conservative message, of you know, if only you’d married a nice, meek hardworking Japanese husband from a nice family, you would never have gotten into this in the first place…

      I see both illustrations above totally reinforcing these messages subliminally; first of all you have the Japanese woman and child together, with the worried Japanese woman tenderly holding young Jim or Taro coming back to the motherland where they both belong, with the estranged emotional gaijin with the big nose gesticulating.

      …jump forward and the manipulative and desperate emotional gaijin has finagled his way to getting his oar in and is now threatening to prize apart young Jim or Taro (who with a smile is so happy to be with him mum where he belongs, in Japan) with the selfish gaijin gesticulating selfishly…”this is what I WANTED…”

      Of course I am just reading one interpretation on it, but the whole thing smacks of selfish unhappy gaijin breaking up mum and happy child.

      So the message is girls- if you don’t want trouble and don’t want to be dragged through the courts, don’t be stupid and marry a gaijin- look at the trouble you are setting yourself up for. Go ahead and marry that nice mild Japanese salariman instead like a normal sensible Japanese woman should.

    5. Scipio Says:

      Scott T. Hards Says:
      I suspect I’m not the only person who is completely unable to find even the slightest hint of anything that can fairly be called “racism” in this illustration.

      Thankfully the blackface caricature of people of African ethnicity seems a thing of the past, in Japan at least. The caricature of mimicking north east Asians by narrowing your eyes by pulling them tightly to the side and protruding your front teeth forward also seems to have followed a likewise death in the West.
      However the caricature of Caucasians by exaggerating nose length, hair texture and roundness of eyes is still well and truly alive in Japan. While I understand your point, Scott, the picture says more in the bigger Japanese media context of things.

      What’s good enough for the goose, should be good enough for the gander, but the Japanese gander sure honks a lot, when the shoe is on other foot – Japanese London community claiming a poster with a Sumo wrestler was racist because the Sumo wrestler was clearly not Asian and the Japanese embassy in Slovakia delivering a formal complaint to the Slovak government over a TV interviewee caricaturing a Japanese by taping her eyes, wearing false buck teeth and a black wig.

      Relax, we sometimes like a honk too.

    6. J.J. Says:

      As an African American and long-termer in Japan, I can say I have a “nose” for racism (lol); as Scipio says, there is no doubt as to the message behind the pictorial from a Japanese media standpoint. I hope that the mention if it being harmless was meant in sarcasm. Bitter Valley-san hit the nail on the head: Japanese look “helpless” and should bring the kid home, and shouldn’t have married a Gaijin in the first place is the message. Though I know women who “stuck with their own” here, who had horrific tales to tell; and Japanese men who never see their kids either. Time for the GOJ to own up that thde world is tired of waiting for them to catch up.

    7. Jim Di Griz Says:

      @Scipio

      ‘Thankfully the blackface caricature of people of African ethnicity seems a thing of the past, in Japan at least.’
      Uh,..yeah…I guess I haven’t seen ‘talento’ do black face for about 12 months. Let’s not get carried away and claim it’s a thing of the past just yet. Tiger Woods and Obama were parodied by ‘talento’ in black face, so it would be a mistake to jump to the conclusion that Japanese society has recognized that black face is internationally unnacceptable.

    8. Charuzu Says:

      I would offer the thought that it is worth considering whether the “racial appearance” of the child will have an effect.

      It may be that if the law passes that a Japanese official will be willing to expatriate a child if the child appears to be non-Japanese, while resisting such expatriation if the child appears Japanese.

      As such, this law may benefit disproportionately children in which a parent is white, while children with an East Asian NJ parent may be less benefited.

      Would Japanese say that a blonde child intuitively understands ‘wa’ or is that reserved for those with East Asian appearance?

    9. Scott T. Hards Says:

      Racism or racist is defined as the believe that one race is somehow superior to others. An illustration that simply depicts factual differences in anatomy cannot be considered racist. Exaggerating physical traits in order to mock them can certainly be classified as such, but I don’t feel any reasonable person would find that the purpose of this cartoon-like drawing was to mock white people’s nose size. “Exaggerated gesturing” you say? Oh, please. The guy is being portrayed having his child taken without his consent. Are you going to tell me that people just stand there stoically in such situations?

      The vast majority of broken international couples involving a Japanese are a foreign male and a Japanese female. This was all that the illustrator was attempting to portray. Reading anything more into this is simply digging for ways to take offense when none was intended, like those foreigners who get all bent out of shape when some old farmer woman in rural Japan refers to them as a “gaijin-san.”

      – Sorry Scott, we’re going to have to disagree about both your definition and application of “racism” and “racist”. Especially if you consider these differences as “factual”.

      And we need a source for your saying that “the vast majority of broken international couples involving a Japanese are a foreign male and a Japanese female”, to establish that as “factual” as well. And to reinforce the factuality, please have some stats to back up your intimation that those foreign males tend to look as depicted in the cartoon.

      And no, this cartoon is a media representation in a reputable national newspaper, incomparable either in scale or scope to some putative rustic random farmer woman.

    10. Peter Says:

      I thought the Hague Convention already stipulates that the child won’t be returned if there is threat of violence, am I wrong?? Did this Michiko Kanazumi person even read up on the articles? Quite foolish “like, duh” comments from her.. Mind you, if she is only familiar with domestic violence cases, she may not have a clue about family law… But what do I know..
      The standards are already set, I don’t understand the need for the J-gov to add in their own. Doesn’t seem like they are joining in good faith and especially not looking retroactively at past cases. In a sense they are condoning past crimes as ok but going forward they will start the wrist slapping. Time will tell but I personally think we will all be let down by the j-gov when the time comes to actually make a decision on this. We probably won’t see change unless some super wealthy or popular person has their child kidnapped to japan, not regular peasants like you and me, but perhaps I am being way too cynical about this. Would love to be proved wrong about this

    11. Debourca Says:

      This part has me stumped:
      “The convention stipulates that it is not necessary to return a child if there is a significant risk that the child will suffer damage physically and/or mentally.

      The subcommittee proposed that factors, such as the risk that the child will face violence back in the country of habitual residence and a situation in which it is difficult for the parents to take custody of the child, be considered.

      Specific cases cited include….the Japanese parent who returns with the child may be arrested.”

      So, does this mean that, if a Japanese parent abducts the child from say, the USA and a warrant is issued for the parent’s arrest, the Japanese Government will not force them to return the child to the USA?

      I must be reading this wrong, surely?

    12. Maxabillion Slartibartfast Says:

      Call me crazy, but I am optimistic about Japan joining the Hague. Sure, Japan will probably try to create and exploit every loophole it possibly can to avoid ever handing over a single abducted child — at least in the beginning. But my hope is that Japan’s joining the Hague will give foreign countries diplomatic leverage in negotiating with Japan in individual cases.

      Whereas before there was no treaty Japan had promised to comply with, now the degree to which it is complying with the letter and spirit of the Hague Treaty can become a real issue and source of pressure in negotiations. So, Japan’s joining the Hague could make things better and couldn’t possibly make them any worse.

    13. Scipio Says:

      Scott T. Hards Says:
      Racism or racist is defined as the believe that one race is somehow superior to others.
      The vast majority of broken international couples involving a Japanese are a foreign male and a Japanese female.

      Wrong on both accounts.

      The first is a very narrow dictionary deinition of racism and says, ‘all legal acts are OK, as long as I don’t place any judgement on that act’.
      Apart from the fact that your definition is very geo-political – in many European countries (Sweden, Italy to name two of many) any public caricature of a nationality or race can be defined, by law, as a possible act of racism – social norms, dictionary definition aside, clearly states that racial caricatures (drawing Jews with pointed exaggerated noses, African Americans with exaggerated large lips or buck teethed Asians squinting through looking glass spectacles) is not acceptable behaviour in the public arena. When will you and Japan join the civilized world?

      The second claim borders on the ridiculous and makes me think that Scott is a troll. Even the most basic research on his part, would have shown that 80% of international marriages between Japanese and ‘the other’, are between Japanese males and ‘other’ females. It takes no great stretch of the imagination or any reliance on Galilean truths to show the falsehood of Scott’s claim ‘The vast majority of broken international couples involving …..’

    14. Scott T. Hards Says:

      Hi Scipio,

      Thanks for your response. Next time you reply, could you read what I wrote a little better? I specifically indicated that caricature intended to mock is racist. Or are you suggesting that any drawing of a human being that has characteristics identifiable as being of a specific ethnic or racial group is racist? Should we just pass a law requiring all such art to be stick figures only with no discernible traits?

      Also, as for the male portrayed in the “racist” illustration, could you please tell me what specific ethnic group or nationality should be taking offense here?

      And if you’re going to sink so low as to suggest that Japan and I are not civilized, you can count me out of any future discussion with you, because people don’t make absurd insults like that in the very civilized world I live in. You’re doing a great job of reminding me why I generally don’t bother attempting to have constructive discussions on the Internet any more.

      Regarding my statement on marriage numbers, yes, my statement is incorrect as written. I should have qualified it with “which involve international child abduction.”

    15. Jim Di Griz Says:

      @Scott T. Hards

      ‘I should have qualified it with “which involve international child abduction.”’
      Got any stats for that? I would like to see how many NJ are abducting their children vs. how many Japanese are abducting their children.

    16. Scipio Says:

      Scott T. Hards Says:
      March 13th, 2012 at 1:11 pm Also, as for the male portrayed in the “racist” illustration, could you please tell me what specific ethnic group or nationality should be taking offense here?

      Well for reality’s sake maybe the male should be another Asian since 90% of interracial marriages in Japan are between a Japanese and another Asian.

      I know statistics are not your strongest point but statistics for the vast majority of Japan child abduction cases involve a western male and a Japanese female would be helpful, although I think you’re wrong here as well.

    17. Jim Di Griz Says:

      @Charuzu #8
      Given the situation where one child in the Otaru Onsen case was refused entry because she looked NJ, whilst a sibling was not, how do you expect your question to be answered?
      As a side note to you, the way I have seen Japanese teachers throw the word ‘haafu’ around in front of the child in question, and in front of other children, as an explanation for any (and all!) behavior (too quiet? ‘haafu’, too noisy? ‘haafu’), convinced me that state schooling in Japan was just asking for a maladjusted child. I am happier to pay for an international school, where the teachers at least retain enough ‘kyakusan wa kamisama’ politeness to refrain from calling my daughter ‘haafu’ to her face, or when talking to me.

      – We’re getting off topic.

    18. Charuzu Says:

      An interesting new study

      http://www.newswise.com/articles/perceptions-of-discrimination-may-adversely-affect-health-of-immigrants-children

      that suggests that in Japan, non-Japanese parents who face discrimination may also face the prospect that the health of their children is also harmed.

      It surely raises the question of how the health of all half-Japanese children is different than that of fully Japanese children.

      To return this study to the topic of this convention:

      “The convention stipulates that it is not necessary to return a child if there is a significant risk that the child will suffer damage physically and/or mentally.”

      It may be that in some cases that taking or returning a child to Japan may harm the child physically.

      There is irony that Japan, which is now focused on the health of bi-national children from divorced parents, as a factor in its consideration of this convention, is probably itself a source of ill-health of such children due to its pronounced ethnic and language-based discrimination towards the non-Japanese parents.

      I would expect that the Diet will take much less interest in curbing this endogenous source of ill-health arising from Japanese society.

    19. Pitarou Says:

      This line concerns me: “The subcommittee proposed that factors, such as … the Japanese parent who returns with the child may be arrested.”

      Surely, child abduction is an arrestable offence! Is someone trying to engineer a loophole?

      My brief scan of the text of the convention (http://www.hcch.net/index_en.php?act=conventions.text&cid=24) didn’t turn up anything that supports or makes necessary such an exemption. The convention gives the Contracting State (i.e. Japan) considerable leeway in how it arranges the handover, and there’s certainly nothing to suggest that the abductor must be ordered to travel with the child.

      With closed door hearings and family case law kept secret, we still have to take a lot on trust. I hope the US State Department’s practice of naming and shaming the non-compliant will keep Japan honest.

    20. Loverilakkuma Says:

      As I have mentioned before, I don’t think Japan is seriously thinking about the meaning of signing the convention. The issue seems to be de-prioritized as the Diet is too busy working on the sales tax hike and reconstruction plan. The Asahi’s article above is pathetic at best. They don’t even bother to specificy the name of the council or who is leading the group for this move. Japan is moving closer? What a joke! How can you expect that to happen while J-media makes a sub-par performance on investigative new reports time after time?? Regarding the history of Japanese court’s problematic rulings on child-custody case, the proposal will likely end up going to the shredder in the middle of deliberation. Expect nothing but dejavu.

    21. John (Yokohama) Says:

      http://www.japantimes.co.jp/text/nn20120413f2.html

      “Friday, April 13, 2012

      Fate of child abductions bill in Diet uncertain

      By MASAMI ITO
      Staff writer
      The government finally submitted legislation to the Diet last month for joining the Hague Convention on international child abductions but its passage appears far from certain.

      Western allies have long pressured Japan to join the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction, and are watching closely to see whether Tokyo lives up to an earlier promise to ratify it.

      But the prospects of this happening in the near future already appear bleak because lawmakers are preoccupied with just one issue — Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda’s plan to hike the consumption tax.

      Although Noda’s administration has decided to push for signing the Hague Convention, lawmakers in both the ruling and opposition camps have serious reservations and the bill’s passage is in doubt. According to the Lower House secretariat, a bill was submitted to the Diet in early March but has not even been referred to a committee for deliberation yet.

      Lawmakers opposed to the treaty argue that joining it may result in children being forcibly returned to an abusive environment, since many Japanese mothers have cited domestic violence as a reason for fleeing their overseas domiciles and taking their children to Japan.

      But abandoned spouses, who end up with little or no access to their children, have been urging Japan to take action.

      At a seminar about the Hague Convention on Monday, Kazuyuki Hamada, a parliamentary secretary at the Foreign Ministry, admitted it’s possible the bill may not be approved by the end of the Diet’s current session.

      Hamada, however, confirmed that the ministry is treating the issue as its top priority and will do everything in its power to ensure the bill’s passage.

      “The political maneuvering is not easy because we are surrounded by so many (competing) political agendas,” Hamada said. “(Given) these agendas, we are not 100 percent certain we can ratify the Hague Convention by the end of this Diet session.

      “But we are determined to push it forward because the issue is hugely relevant to the values of not only of our country, but also those of the international community,” he said.

      Kirsten, an American mother who attended the seminar and asked that her last name be withheld, recounted how her former Japanese spouse abducted her 14-year-old son, in Japan. Although the case technically does not fall under the Hague Convention, many former partners in the nations, whether they are Japanese or foreigners, experience difficulty getting access to their children after they divorce of break up.

      Kirsten said she was granted legal guardianship of her son after she separated from her husband, but the boy never returned from a visit to his father in 2007. Her former husband held their son for more than a year before the courts acknowledged he should be returned to his mother.

      “I used to respect my dad and looked forward to seeing him on the weekends with my sister. But one time I went to my dad’s without my sister and was told that I would no longer be able to see my mother. I was really shocked,” said Kirsten’s son, who wished to remain anonymous.

      The boy said he spent that year with his father looking forward to the postcards that his mother regularly sent him.

      “I was very confused about the decisions my dad made. I didn’t understand why I couldn’t be with my mother,” he said.

      But after they were reunited, he said he was also able to gradually rebuild his relationship with his father.

      Akiko Ohnogi, a psychologist who specializes in child and family counseling and has worked on many child abduction cases, stressed the importance of maintaining healthy relationships with both parents.

      Such relations have “an impact on (the child’s) entire life — it’s not just something that happens during childhood and eventually goes away,” he said.

      “The attachment to both parents determines how children view themselves, how they view interpersonal relationships and their general world view.”

      Other panelists at the seminar included Colin P.A. Jones, a professor at Doshisha Law School in Kyoto and an expert on international child abductions.

      The seminar was jointly organized by child rights advocates John Gomez and David Hearn, who directed the movie “From the Shadows” on the theme of international and domestic parental abductions, and which is currently in postproduction. The event was supported by the Harvard Club of Japan.”

    22. Loverilakkuma Says:

      Here an update about new rules on child custody procedure. This is still missing the point in resolving the real problem. I would say this could even encourage parental alienation by an estranged spouse/family.

      http://the-japan-news.com/news/article/0000216920

      Separation of kids to take place at home / New rules set for resolving custody in divorces
      The Yomiuri Shimbun
      May 12, 2013

      New rules have been established over the forced separation of children from one parent for the purpose of handing them over to the other parent in divorces in a practice called direct enforcement.

      The rules, which were set after discussions on the matter among judges nationwide, aim to mitigate negative effects of direct enforcement on children concerned.

      Under the rules, court enforcement officers will be allowed to separate a child of a divorced couple from a parent only at home, rather than at school or on a road to school, where trouble between officers and parents and others can potentially occur.

      The Supreme Court will inform courts nationwide of the new rules this month.

      The rules are expected to improve the situation of direct enforcement, where children may feel they are being moved around like property. There are also calls for establishing legislation on how direct enforcement is implemented.

      Under direct enforcement, district court enforcement officers forcibly separate children from parents and transfer them to the other parent if the first parent does not abide by a family court’s order to do so.

      Direct enforcement was rarely implemented until 10 years ago because some courts ruled that direct enforcement, which regards children as “movable property” based on the Civil Execution Law, is illegal.

      However, the number of direct enforcement cases has recently increased due to intensifying conflicts over children between divorced parents, with the number rising to 120 in 2010 and 132 in 2011.

      Previously, there were no rules for how direct enforcement was executed. Court enforcement officers sometimes separated a child from a parent at nursery schools, primary schools and school roads, sometimes causing incidents.

      For example, officers separating a child from his father at a nursery school got into a scuffle with the man.

      In another case, a grandmother who realized that officers were there to take away her grandchild stayed in a nearby building and refused to hand over the child.

      Under such circumstances, about 150 district court judges and enforcement officers in charge of direct enforcement held a meeting in January and February to review the way direct enforcement is executed.

      Most participants at the meeting said direct enforcement should not be implemented on school roads or at primary schools because taking such measures in public could have a negative effect on a child’s mental and physical health.

      They agreed that direct enforcement should rather be executed at a child’s home when possible.

      Direct enforcement refers to a procedure of compulsory execution in which court enforcement officers seize fixed or movable assets of debtors who do not abide by court rulings for the purpose of transferring them to creditors.

      Compulsory execution also includes indirect enforcement, under which debtors are obliged to pay a certain amount of money until they satisfy the court rulings. Until about 10 years ago, only indirect enforcement was implemented for the transfer of a child from one parent to another within the country.

      Regarding failed international marriages, a bill that stipulates procedures for the return of a child from one parent to another was approved at the House of Representatives’ plenary session on Thursday. The bill, which was compiled to join the Hague Convention, is expected to pass the Diet in the current session.

      The bill defines not only the place a child should be separated from one parent but also the age range of children subject to forcible transfer, as well as the powers of enforcement officers. However, these rules will not be applied for direct enforcement in purely domestic cases.

      Judges and experts on direct enforcement said Japan should establish legislation to stipulate rules for the practice considering that Japan will join the Hague Convention, which contains rules for dealing with international child custody disputes.
      ENDS

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