Opponents of Japan’s participation in the Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade talks held a big rally in Tokyo on Saturday.
The rally coincided with Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda’s return from a G20 meeting in Cannes, France, where he indicated that he would decide on Japan’s participation in the talks by next Thursday.
Noda is under intense pressure to make a decision before the two-day APEC summit that starts in Hawaii on Nov 12. He has hinted on more than one occasion that he favors Japan joining the talks.
Saturday afternoon’s anti-TPP rally included several lawmakers from both the ruling and opposition parties, as well as hundreds of farmers and consumer activists.
Marching around the Diet building, they demanded that the Japanese government not make a hasty decision and take into account the views of agricultural communities which fear their livelihoods will be lost to cheap imports.