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Lawmakers OK Bill to Save Pension System

THE WORLD | IN BRIEF / JAPAN

June 05, 2004|From Times Wire Reports

Japan's legislature adopted a bill designed to save the country's troubled pension system after an all-night debate marred by brawls and a walkout by opposition parties.

A majority of upper house members passed the highly unpopular measure, which raises citizens' pension premiums while cutting their benefits.

Opposition parties had delayed the vote for more than 18 hours using a range of stalling tactics, causing frayed tempers that at one point erupted into a brawl outside the upper chamber.

Security guards could be seen trying to separate lawmakers as they shoved one another against the walls of the corridor.

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