The Hague Convention – Japan says it will sign child abduction treaty


January 19, 2013

Source: Japan Today

WASHINGTON —

Japan’s foreign minister said Friday that the new government would sign a treaty on child abductions, addressing one of the few rifts in relations with its main ally the United States.

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Japan has not signed or ratified the 1980 Hague Convention, which requires the return of wrongfully held children to the countries where they usually live, but a previous left-leaning government had said it planned to do so.

Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida, whose conservative Liberal Democratic Party returned to power last month, said on a visit to Washington that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s government would take the same stance.

“The government of Japan is intending to go through the necessary procedures for early signing of the treaty,” Kishida told a news conference with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Clinton said she hoped that Japan’s parliament would pass legislation on the Hague treaty during its upcoming session.

Japanese courts virtually never grant custody to foreign parents or to fathers, leaving few legal avenues for fathers whose former partners have fled to Japan with their children.

U.S. parents have pursued at least 120 cases in Japan to seek access to half-Japanese children, invariably to no avail. The U.S. Congress has repeatedly pressed Japan to take up the issue.

The previous Japanese government’s position had initially heartened U.S. officials, but their hopes dimmed as Tokyo delayed action on the Hague treaty and indicated that a ratification would only apply to future cases.

Japanese critics of the Hague convention have previously argued that the country needs to protect women from potentially abusive foreign men.

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One thought on “The Hague Convention – Japan says it will sign child abduction treaty

  1. When Japan agrees to all the stipulations of signing the Hague convention. It needs to implement proper access to all the children who have been alienated and abducted and for the loving parents who have been denied human rights for all these years.
    It’s clearly a human rights violation to deny a loving father/Mother all his/her precious years of spending time with his or her child.
    Whether they set up free counselors or some kind of equal rights for visitation………….. They need to grant proper access to the children with no political loopholes within the law. Thousands upon Thousands of Mothers and Fathers will come to Japan in hopes of seeing their children, who have also suffered the trauma of the vicious torment of being denied access.
    Children need to know, they were indeed loved, Whatever kind of Brainwashing that might have occurred by the Alienating or abducting parent taking advantage of Japanese law.
    Japan has continuously violated international law and has turned a blind eye to the fact that other countries and foreign people Love their children. The relatives of the children have suffered and the children need to now they have numerous relatives who have wanted to share and be a part of their lives, but have also suffered the torment of passing years of denied contact.
    Life is about Love and Life is about knowing you were loved. Life can be cold, Hope the children can feel the warmth of their Parents and Relatives Love soon.
    Tim Johnston Japan
    Kai Endo Japan

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