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Japan:
Government

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Country name
Definition
conventional long form: none
conventional short form: Japan
local long form: Nihon-koku/Nippon-koku
local short form: Nihon/Nippon
Government type
Definition
constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary government
Capital
Definition
name: Tokyo
geographic coordinates: 35 41 N, 139 45 E
time difference: UTC+9 (14 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Administrative divisions
Definition
47 prefectures; Aichi, Akita, Aomori, Chiba, Ehime, Fukui, Fukuoka, Fukushima, Gifu, Gunma, Hiroshima, Hokkaido, Hyogo, Ibaraki, Ishikawa, Iwate, Kagawa, Kagoshima, Kanagawa, Kochi, Kumamoto, Kyoto, Mie, Miyagi, Miyazaki, Nagano, Nagasaki, Nara, Niigata, Oita, Okayama, Okinawa, Osaka, Saga, Saitama, Shiga, Shimane, Shizuoka, Tochigi, Tokushima, Tokyo, Tottori, Toyama, Wakayama, Yamagata, Yamaguchi, Yamanashi
Independence
Definition
660 B.C. (traditional founding by Emperor JIMMU)
National holiday
Definition
Birthday of Emperor AKIHITO, 23 December (1933)
Constitution
Definition
3 May 1947
Legal system
Definition
modeled after German civil law system with English-American influence; judicial review of legislative acts in the Supreme Court; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations
Suffrage
Definition
20 years of age; universal
Executive branch
Definition
chief of state: Emperor AKIHITO (since 7 January 1989)
head of government: Prime Minister Yasuo FUKUDA (since 26 September 2007)
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the prime minister
elections: Diet designates prime minister; constitution requires that prime minister commands parliamentary majority; following legislative elections, leader of majority party or leader of majority coalition in House of Representatives usually becomes prime minister; monarch is hereditary
election results: FUKUDA elected prime minister with 338 of 477 votes cast in the House of Representatives; he received 106 of 240 votes cast in the House of Councillors; vote of House of Representatives prevailed
Legislative branch
Definition
bicameral Diet or Kokkai consists of the House of Councillors or Sangi-in (242 seats - members elected for six-year terms; half reelected every three years; 146 members in multi-seat constituencies and 96 by proportional representation) and the House of Representatives or Shugi-in (480 seats - members elected for four-year terms; 300 in single-seat constituencies; 180 members by proportional representation in 11 regional blocs)
elections: House of Councillors - last held 29 July 2007 (next to be held in July 2010); House of Representatives - last held 11 September 2005 (next election by September 2009)
election results: House of Councillors - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - DPJ 109, LDP 83, Komeito 20, JCP 7, SDP 5, others 18
House of Representatives - percent of vote by party (in single-seat constituencies) - LDP 47.8%, DPJ 36.4%, others 15.8%; seats by party - LDP 296, DPJ 113, Komeito 31, JCP 9, SDP 7, others 24 (2007)
Judicial branch
Definition
Supreme Court (chief justice is appointed by the monarch after designation by the cabinet; all other justices are appointed by the cabinet)
Political parties and leaders
Definition
Democratic Party of Japan or DPJ [Ichiro OZAWA]; Japan Communist Party or JCP [Kazuo SHII]; Komeito [Akihiro OTA]; Liberal Democratic Party or LDP [Yasuo FUKUDA]; Social Democratic Party or SDP [Mizuho FUKUSHIMA]
Political pressure groups and leaders
Definition
other: business groups; trade unions
International organization participation
Definition
ADB, AfDB (nonregional members), APEC, APT, ARF, ASEAN (dialogue partner), Australia Group, BIS, CE (observer), CERN (observer), CP, EAS, EBRD, FAO, G-5, G-7, G-8, G-10, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC, LAIA, MIGA, NEA, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OPCW, OSCE (partner), Paris Club, PCA, PIF (partner), SAARC (observer), SECI (observer), UN, UN Security Council (temporary), UNCTAD, UNDOF, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNITAR, UNRWA, UNWTO, UPU, WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZC
Diplomatic representation in the US
Definition
chief of mission: Ambassador Ichiro FUJISAKI
chancery: 2520 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 238-6700
FAX: [1] (202) 328-2187
consulate(s) general: Anchorage, Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Denver, Detroit, Agana (Guam), Honolulu, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New Orleans, New York, Portland (Oregon), San Francisco, Seattle
Diplomatic representation from the US
Definition
chief of mission: Ambassador J. Thomas SCHIEFFER
embassy: 1-10-5 Akasaka, Minato-ku, Tokyo 107-8420
mailing address: APO AP 96337-5004
telephone: [81] (03) 3224-5000
FAX: [81] (03) 3505-1862
consulate(s) general: Naha (Okinawa), Osaka-Kobe, Sapporo
consulate(s): Fukuoka, Nagoya
Flag description
Definition
white with a large red disk (representing the sun without rays) in the center


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