JAPAN: Japan would raise the age of consent from 13 to 16 in an overhaul of legislation initiated by criticisms specifying that the laws that are persisting now do not protect children from rape and other sexual offences.
Japan to raise age of consent
Among all the G7 countries, 13 has been the lowest number of age of consent. The justice ministry panel has instigated changes in raising the age of consent as a segment of a chain of reforms to the penal code that would deem voyeurism as a criminal offence and give some transparency to the requirements for rape prosecutions.
Criminal laws in Japan require two conditions that ought to be met to ensure that a sexual assault has been committed. One is that the sex must be non-consensual, and two, the victim’s inability to physically resist must have proof.
The panel of the justice ministry did not remove the words “violence and intimidation” by the accused rapist to incapacitate their victims but also clarified that the definition also incorporates intoxication, drugging, catching victims “off-guard”, and the use of psychological control.
Many rape acquittals in 2019 have sparked this change that also caused public criticism involving a case where a man repeatedly raped his teenage daughter.
The branch acquitted the father of the Nagoya district as it stated that there was no concrete proof that the teenage daughter had not been able to resist despite the court’s understanding that she had not consented. A higher court later sentenced the man to 10 years of prison.
Human Rights department now have been happy with the changes made even though it “still fails to meet international rape legislation standards.” The group also added that Japan should “redefine the crime of rape as all non-consensual sexual intercourse.”
The recommendations have already been sent to the minister Ken Saito and will be soon submitted to the parliament in the next few months.
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