45,000 Japanese protestors rally against Abe's security bills
Updated: 2015-09-15 09:16
TOKYO - Thousands of protesters rallied in Tokyo against Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's security policy on Monday as the government aims to enact legislation this month that would allow Japanese troops to fight abroad for the first time since World War II.
Participants including Nobel literature laureate Kenzaburo Oe and leaders of main opposition parties gathered in front of the parliament building, waving glow sticks and holding up placards reading "no war" and "scrap war legislation."
Protesters broke through metal barriers after scuffling with police and streamed onto the street in front of parliament.
Organisers said the protesters numbered 45,000. A police spokesman said the Metropolitan Police Department did not give estimates for the size of the protest.
A similar rally on Sunday, on Aug 30 attracted about 120,000 people, according to the organizers.
Abe's ruling bloc wants to pass the security bills before parliament ends its session on Sept 27. A vote in the upper house is expected this week.
"Abe's government is currently not listening to the voices of the people, and many things are being pulled back to the past in a bad way. So I can't keep quiet," said protester Yasuko Yanagihara, 69.