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Japan immigration

Abe's party backs foreign-worker plan, with promise of review

Legislation heads to Japanese parliament, where the opposition vows a fight

Discussions over Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's foreign-worker program turned heated at times at a meeting of Japan's ruling Liberal Democratic Party. (Photo by Uichiro Kasai)

TOKYO -- Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's ruling party on Tuesday endorsed a controversial visa program to admit more foreign workers, but only on the condition of reviewing the system within a few years, reflecting lingering misgivings within the party.

The Liberal Democratic Party's General Council approved plans to create two visa categories for low- and high-skilled workers. The legislation will be submitted to the Diet following cabinet approval on Friday. Abe's government targets for passage during the current session to kick-start the program next April.

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