Japanese lawmakers approve controversial immigration bill

ISTANBUL – Japan's parliament on Friday passed a controversial bill that allows the government to deport people “who repeatedly apply for refugee status,” according to local media.

The House of Councillors, or the upper house of the bi-cameral parliament, locally known as Diet, passed the law with backing from the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, led by Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, their junior coalition partner Komeito, and other conservative opposition factions, the Tokyo-based Kyodo News reported.

The lower house passed the bill on Thursday.

The new law aims to decrease prolonged detentions at immigration facilities and expedite the deportation of foreigners who overstay and do not comply with deportation orders.

Under the past law, Japan could not deport foreign nationals to their home countries while their refugee status applications were pending.

Critics have raised concerns that the revised legislation could put the individuals at risk of persecution back in their home countries. (Anadolu)