Sunday, July 5, 2015

Statement of Japan Federation of News Paper Workers Unions on the remark by Hyakuta Naoki

The Japan Federation of News Paper Workers Unions strongly protests the remark by the writer, HYAKUTA Naoki, as an attempt to suppress the mass media and a violation to the freedom of press. His remark was made on June 15th at a study session of junior LDP diet members promoting the revision of the Japanese constitution. According to the press, when asked to comment on the allegation that local newspapers in Okinawa are critical of the national government, Hyakuta replied, “the two local newspapers in Okinawa ought to be shut down. I don’t want it to happen, but if one of the islands in Okinawa were occupied by China, then the people of Okinawa would wake up.” Individuals have the right to say what they want and we sincerely accept  different opinions as well as criticism of the press. But we cannot overlook this remark since Hyakuta was a board member of NHK until this February and is still a public figure involved in the media. Moreover, his remark was made in a lecture to over 40 diet members. (Statement of Japan Federation of News Paper Workers Unions )
Photo: Hyakuta speaking at the study session

憲法改正を推進する自民党若手議員が集まった25日の勉強会で、作家の百田尚樹氏が沖縄の地元紙を「つぶさないといけない」と発言したことに、新聞労連は 「新聞メディアへの弾圧であり、報道の自由への侵害だ」として強く抗議する。報道によると、沖縄県の地元紙が政府に批判的だとの意見に対し、百田氏は「沖縄の二つの新聞はつぶさないといけない。あってはいけないことだが、沖縄のどこかの島が中国に取られれば目を覚ますはずだ」と主張した。個人の発言は自由であり、新聞への批判や異なる主張について我々は真摯に受け止める。しかし百田氏は今年2月までNHKの経営委員を務めるなど、メディアに関わってきた人物であり、約40人の国会議員が集まる場で講師として発言している以上、看過するわけにはいかない。(新聞労連の声明より) 

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