|Realise a robust society that protects the lives and health of its citizens
|The overall level of safety in our society is declining, and dangers lurk around us. We will build once again a society that sets a high value on life and health and maintains high standards of morality both domestically and overseas, and that protects the lives and health of its people.
|5-1 Improve the living environment so people can maintain good health
 Assure reliable medical care with early detection and treatment. Ensure the transparency of the consultation fee revision process.
We will seek to eliminate restrictions on having medical examinations and to ensure early detection and early treatment of illness. To that end, at the time of the revision of consultation fees in 2006, we will restore to 20% the proportion of medical expenses borne by people covered by national health insurance, and carry out a reform of the system of medical care and of the system of medical care for the elderly.
In addition, at the time of the revision of consultation fees we will make public the data on such aspects as medicines and materials used for medical care, medical point scores, dentistry point scores, and home visits for nursing care, as well as price data, and also add them to our public comments. In addition, we will ensure that the composition of the membership of the Central Social Insurance Medical Council, which carries out the revision, includes equal numbers of people representing the parties providing the services, those paying for the services, and those representing the public interest (including patients); we will make the minutes public. These reforms will be carried out in stages from the 2005 fiscal year.
 Establish 350 emergency medical centres for infants, and cut to 10% the proportion of medical expenses borne by parents of elementary school children.
We will develop a system of emergency pediatric care. Within three years of coming into power we will establish a structure to accept them in times of emergency by designating at least 350 hospitals nationwide to serve as emergency medical centres for infants.
In addition, we will rationalise consultation fees for pediatric care, and by the 2005 fiscal year will submit amending legislation to the Diet for the purpose of reducing the proportion of medical expenses borne by pediatric patients under national health insurance. For patients up to three years of age this will be cut from 20% to 10%, and for those aged three and above it will be cut from 30% to 10% until the year they leave elementary school. The budget required to fund this is estimated to be some ¥45 billion. The government's costs will be met by diverting wasteful expenses, and with respect to the health insurance system the fiscal situation will be taken into consideration.
 Make it obligatory to disclose patients' medical records and to issue itemized statements of medical fees.
To foster better relationships of cooperation and trust between patients and doctors, during the 2004 fiscal year we will table a bill in the Diet to make it obligatory for doctors to disclose patients' medical records and to issue itemized statements of medical fees.
 Conduct stringent centralized food safety checks.
We intend to conduct centralized inspections of imported foodstuffs, enforcement of food-distribution regulations, and operation of the food labelling system, and to strengthen food-safety regulations. For that purpose, by the 2007 fiscal year the DPJ administration will centralize food risk management - currently split between the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries and the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare - on the food safety committee to be established within the Cabinet Office. This will be given powers similar to those of the Fair Trade Commission, and we will strengthen it radically, including by appointing committee members to represent consumers. The budgetary requirement will be approximately ¥20 billion in the 2007 fiscal year, which will be allocated from the budgets of the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare and the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.
 Give first priority to safety, and strengthen supervision of nuclear power administration.
We will make a clear separation between the operation and regulation of administrative organs for nuclear power, giving first priority to safety. We will split off the body controlling nuclear power safety from the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, and establish a new independent administrative body within the Cabinet Office, building a structure for rigorous and centralized checking.
We aim to submit a bill to the Diet in 2005, and bring it into force in the 2006 fiscal year.
5-2 Deal severely with crime, making the country a safe place to live in once again.
 Push up the declining arrest ratio by increasing the number of police officers by 30,000.
Our goal is to restore the arrest ratio for serious crimes, which over the past five years has fallen to 48%, to the level of 84% it was at five years ago. To achieve that we will increase the number of police officers in the regions by at least 30,000 over four years; expand police capabilities for community policing, criminal investigation, and community safety; strengthen the structure for crime-prevention patrols; and put officers back into empty police boxes. Over a four-year period from 2004 we will increase the number of officers by 6,000-7,000 annually, and secure a budget of around ¥40 billion per year, and therefore requiring a budget of ¥160 billion after four years.
We will also ensure that the views of local citizens are reflected in police administration. We will submit a bill to amend the Police Law in the regular session of the Diet in 2005, with the objective of establishing complaint-handling committees within prefectural public safety commissions; these will have their own independent secretariats and be composed of local citizens, knowledgeable people, and others acting as ombudspersons.
 Institute life sentences without parole, and stiffen other penalties for serious crimes.
We will take steps to stiffen penalties for serious crimes, which are currently criticised for being too lenient, and institute indeterminate sentences without parole. Our aim is to revise the Penal Code within three years of taking power, with a view to revising all punishments.
 Strengthen the Domestic Violence Prevention Law
During 2004 we will put before the Diet a bill to amend the Law for the Prevention of Spousal Violence and the Protection of Victims (the so-called DV Prevention Law), so as to extend the scope of restraining orders to cover other individuals such as former spouses, children, and relations. We will endeavour to improve the system of restraining orders, for example through the prohibition of threatening behaviour and telephone contacts, and by extending the period of validity of expulsion orders and domestic restraining orders, and seek to strengthen the consultation system, etc., by means of police reform.
We will strengthen the self-help structure and increase financial support for private shelters, for which we will set aside annual budgets of approximately ¥2.5 billion from the 2004 fiscal year.
5-3 Protect world peace, centred on the United Nations.
 Conduct independent diplomacy and enhance the functions of the United Nations.
We will change Japan's passive foreign-policy stance, transforming it into a country with a clear-cut will in the realm of diplomacy.
To ensure that the Japan-U.S. alliance evolves in a meaningful way, we will make our basic stance towards the United States one of "cooperating when we ought to, and of speaking our minds when we feel we should". In that way we can strengthen the relationship into a mature alliance.
In the Asian region we will pursue mutual cooperation and confidence-building. We will strengthen collaboration and cooperation as a nation that is itself an integral part of Asia, including in the sphere of economic cooperation, for example by promoting the conclusion of free trade agreements, and also of regional security, the environment, education, and measures to fight crime.
We will make active contributions to UN activities in such fields as humanitarian assistance, the protection of the environment, education, human rights, and conflict prevention, and at the same time take an active part in moves to reform the United Nations. Subject to the backing of domestic public opinion and the support of member nations, we will continue with the quest for Japan to become a permanent member of the Security Council.
Peace-keeping operations have gained the understanding and solid support of the people of Japan. In order to respond to the increasing diversity of requests for these operations, we will give active study to aspects such as a review of the criteria for the use of weapons by troops that are dispatched, and the manner in which the Diet should be involved in factors such as the conditions, scale, and periods of participation. We wish to enable Japan to be directly involved in the building and maintenance of international peace.
 Tackle the North Korea problem head-on, including resolving the abduction issue.
A rapid resolution of North Korea's abductions of Japanese citizens is the most important issue from the standpoint of Japanese sovereignty and from a humanitarian perspective. We will press North Korea strongly for the prompt transfer to Japan of the victims' families and a full clarification of the abductions, and appeal to the United Nations and world opinion. As well as actively addressing the problem of allowing people to leave North Korea if they so wish, we will strengthen the structure of maritime policing, including the exercise of control over the smuggling of stimulants from suspect North Korean vessels.
The question of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction is a vital one for regional security. We will evaluate the international effort being made through the six-party talks, in the hope that they will develop into a confidence-building structure within the region, and will reinforce steps that are also backed by the United Nations.
 Review the form of reconstruction assistance for Iraq
The use of armed force against Iraq by the United States and others was a violation of the UN Charter and of international law, and cannot be condoned. The Special Measures Law for Iraq provides for the dispatch of members of the Self-Defense Forces to Iraq, where armed conflict is continuing, but it makes no distinction between combat zones and non-combat zones, and Japanese troops would effectively be providing logistical support for combat and occupation activities by U.S. and British forces. In view of factors such as these, we will not send troops under this law, which we will review and may repeal.
Nevertheless, we will actively extend humanitarian and reconstruction aid to ease the suffering the people of Iraq are experiencing under the state of breakdown of the administration there, for example in the medical-care, education, and economic spheres. We will support efforts in the United Nations and elsewhere to transfer sovereignty to Iraq quickly, and participate actively in international efforts to provide reconstruction support, including through financial assistance appropriate for the circumstances concerned, such as the nature of the recipients and the use and management of the funds.
Once the people of Iraq have established their own government and a resolution has been adopted by the Security Council at that government's request, Japan will - at its own discretion and within the scope permitted by its Constitution - provide assistance by easing the criteria for participation in peace-keeping operations and peace-keeping forces, including through the use of the Self-Defense Forces.
 Commence the revision of the Japan-U.S. Status of Forces Agreement, including the strengthening of measures to deal with crimes.
We wish to ensure the sound management of the Japan-U.S. alliance, which is pivotal to Japan's foreign policy and national security. To achieve that we will embark upon a revision of the Japan-U.S. Status of Forces Agreement with the aim of incorporating into it such elements as a principle sanctioning the handover of persons suspected of serious crimes to the Japanese legal authorities prior to prosecution, the principle of extending the jurisdiction of Japanese laws to U.S. forces' facilities, and provisions relating to environmental conservation. Our goal will be to reach final agreement within three years. During the course of the negotiations for this revision, we will pursue the reorganization and reduction of U.S. bases in Japan, based on consideration of factors such as the situation prevailing in Asia.
 Increase to 20% the ratio of appointments of people who are not professional diplomats to ambassadorial and other diplomatic posts.
To develop a flexible and effective diplomatic service to serve as the "face of Japan", we will broaden the appointment of ambassadors and other diplomats (including ambassadors extraordinary and plenipotentiary) to include non-diplomats such as scholars, NGO officials, mayors, and former politicians, so as to conduct vigorous diplomacy that shows the true face of the people of Japan. The ratio of these appointments will be increased to 20% from the present 6% over a four-year period after the DPJ assumes power.
 Enact a basic law on global environmental preservation, and engage in environment-related diplomacy.
Based on the philosophy of the coexistence of humankind and nature, one strategic diplomatic issue through which Japan can contribute to the world is that of fostering activities aimed at preserving the global environment. By the end of the 2005 financial year we will spell out clearly our philosophy of preserving the environment of the entire earth, and submit to the Diet and pursue the enactment of a draft basic law for global environmental conservation.
 Switch to the development of a defence capability able to protect the people.
During the 2005 financial year we will formulate a new defence plan to give Japan the capability to deal flexibly with dangers of all kinds, such as missile threats and terrorism.
Under this new defence plan we will aim to accomplish goals such as the following within five years: (i) reduce the Ground Self-Defense Forces, (ii) introduce and strengthen special forces to deal with threats such as terrorism, (iii) expand the self-defence reserves, (iv) abolish the armoured divisions and reduce the numbers of tanks and artillery pieces by 20%, (v) enhance the integrated administration of the ground, maritime, and air forces, (vi) enhance the high-technology and IT content of military technology, and (vii) increase missile-defence capability.
In addition, we will undertake a comprehensive study of ballistic-missiles defence, encompassing aspects such as its fundamental necessity and cost-effectiveness.
The budget of approximately ¥500 billion that will be necessary for these measures will be allocated from the existing defence budget.