According to local media, the Japanese government has requested that a court order the dissolution of a church that was under investigation following the murder of former prime minister Shinzo Abe.
After Abe’s shocking murder in July of last year, the Unification Church, sometimes known as the “Moonies,” came under the spotlight.
Tetsuya Yamagami, who attacked him, claimed the church caused his mother’s bankruptcy and accused Abe of supporting it.
The church claims that because of Abe’s murder, it has unfairly been maligned.
The study lasted a year and was commissioned by Prime Minister Fumio Kishida.
The Unification Church will lose its tax advantages if it is disbanded, but it will still be able to function as an organization.
Yamagami stated that his mother, who had been a member of the church for thirty years, had been coerced into making a donation. Suits costing millions of dollars have been filed in response to charges similar to this.
A religious order may be dissolved in accordance with Japan’s Religious Corporations Law if its actions are “clearly recognised as being substantially detrimental to public welfare.”
The church was previously fined by the Tokyo District Court at the request of the Japanese Ministry of Education for neglecting to provide information about its operations.
Before his passing, there was a lot of discussion about Abe’s relationship with the church, particularly on social media.
In 2021, he spoke remotely at a church-related gathering. The church’s anti-communist attitude is reported to have attracted the grandpa of his grandfather, a previous prime minister.
The Unification Church is renowned for hosting large-scale weddings and was established in South Korea in 1954. In honor of its late founder Sun Myung Moon, its members are most popularly referred to as “Moonies.”
According to academics, it entered Japan in the 1960s and developed relationships with politicians to increase its support and reputation.
Critics have labeled the church as “cult-like” and it has been embroiled in controversy for years.
It has been sued numerous times by members who allege that they were coerced into making donations to the church. According to their attorneys, the complainants have lost at least 5.4 billion yen ($39 million; £33 million) during the last five years.
A Liberal Democratic Party internal inquiry revealed that 179 of the party’s 379 lawmakers had contacts with the Unification Church. The party is led by incumbent Prime Minister Fumio Kishida.
The Unification Church was then excommunicated by Mr. Kishida, who also emphasized that he had no personal ties to the organization.
After previously refusing requests to do so, he initiated an investigation into the church in October of last year and declared he was “taking seriously” claims that the organization had exploited its members for gain.
According to Professor Yoshihide Sakurai of Hokkaido University, a cult expert and author of a book on the Unification Church, the influence of the “highly problematic” church might be significantly reduced.
According to Prof. Sakurai, the public will grow suspicious of it and it will be seen as shameful for politicians to be involved with it.
The court ruling cannot, however, halt the operations of the group’s numerous linked political and commercial organizations, including newspaper publishing firms, travel agencies, and merchants, he claimed.
According to Prof. Sakurai, the court might not even grant the order for dissolution.
“Thousands of adherents nevertheless insist that they chose to join the church and continue to take part in its activities. It will be challenging for the court to declare the organization wholly criminal given the simultaneous existence of victims and followers, he said.
Over 1,300 buildings destroyed and about 1,900 people killed in Gaza
Almost a week after Israeli forces launched a heavy bombardment of the heavily populated enclave, rocket strikes on Gaza have killed at least 1,900 people, the majority of them were civilians and included over 600 children, according to the Palestinian health ministry.
According to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the bombardment is “just the beginning” as his organization seeks retribution against Hamas for the more than 1,300 people that its forces massacred a week ago.
OCHA stated, “1,324 residential and non-residential buildings, comprising 5,540 housing units, have been destroyed, according to the Gaza Ministry of Public Works.”
“An additional 3,743 housing units have sustained irreparable damage and are no longer livable.”
OCHA said that an additional 55,000 housing units have sustained minor damage.
The UN said on Saturday that over 1,300 structures have been destroyed in the Gaza Strip thus far.
“5,540 housing units” in those structures were demolished, according to the UN’s humanitarian organization OCHA, and roughly 3,750 additional homes suffered damage that rendered them unusable.
By the end of Thursday, the UN, which has been keeping track of the number of individuals displaced from their homes within the Gaza Strip, had registered over 423,000.
Israel subsequently issued a warning, estimating that 1.1 million residents in the enclave’s northern region needed to leave as soon as possible in order to avoid an impending ground invasion.
According to OCHA, “it is estimated that tens of thousands have fled” as of Friday, 1800 GMT.
It stated, “At this time, the exact number of internally displaced people in the Gaza Strip is unknown.”
It stated that “vehicles of those evacuating the north were hit, killing more than 40 people and injuring 150 others,” citing the Palestinian Health Ministry.
Many people decided to give up on their evacuation attempts and head back home as a result of these instances.
“At first, there were no designated safe passageways that allowed individuals to securely follow the directives to relocate southward. Families were among the hundreds of individuals who had to escape on foot.
According to OCHA, the majority of Gaza Strip residents do not currently have access to safe drinking water.
“People are using agricultural wells to obtain brackish water as a last resort, raising serious concerns about the spread of waterborne diseases.”
According to OCHA, airstrikes have damaged six water wells, three water pumping stations, one water reservoir, and one desalination facility that provide water to nearly 1,100,000 people since hostilities began.
According to the report, the complete blackout of electricity has worsened food shortages and driven vital sanitation, water, and health facilities “to the brink of collapse.”