A number of Japanese lawmakers have formed a committee that hopes to implement same-sex marriage before the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.
Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) member Hiroshi Hase has explained that the committee are desperate for the country to not capture the world's attention for the wrong reasons, like the media backlash Russia faced during the Sochi Winter Olympics last year because of its anti-gay law.
So far, 38 lawmakers have joined the pro-equality committee, including 13 from Japan's ruling party LDP. They intend to study overseas anti-discrimination and same-sex marriage laws, hoping to find a way to implement similar legislation into Japanese law.
"As it hosts the Olympic Games, there is no doubt that Japanese society will be questioned on how it treats its sexual minorities," said Hase, arguing that Japan needs to deepen its understanding of the LGBT community. "We must substantiate the principles described in the basic plan of the Games."
Currently, same-sex marriage is illegal in Japan. An opinion poll carried out by Nihon Yoron Chosa-ka in 2014 found that 42.3% of the public support same-sex marriage, while 52.4% are still against it.
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