Aso admonishes top bureaucrat after sexual harassment report
Japan Today -- Apr 13
Japan's finance minister admonished his top bureaucrat on Thursday after a magazine reported the official had sexually harassed several female journalists, but he stopped short of imposing any punishment.

The issue could become another headache for Finance Minister Taro Aso and for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, whose ratings have been eroded because of several scandals over suspected cronyism and cover-ups.

A steady trickle of new allegations about the scandals has raised doubts about how long Abe can stay in power.

The weekly Shincho reported in its latest edition published on Thursday that Administrative Vice Finance Minister Junichi Fukuda went drinking with a female reporter recently at a bar near his house and asked to touch her breasts and kiss her.

The magazine quoted Fukuda as denying the allegation.

Reuters was not able to independently confirm the report and attempts by Reuters to reach Fukuda at his office were not successful.

The magazine related a similar incident with a female reporter at a restaurant in the past and said Fukuda had been known for making sexually suggestive comments to women journalists.

The reporter in the most recent incident said she had gone to meet him because he was an important news source, the magazine said.

The magazine did not identify the reporter nor several other women mentioned in its report.

麻生財務大臣は事務方トップである福田事務次官のセクハラ疑惑が週刊誌に掲載されたことについて、福田次官へ注意を行ったことを明らかにしました。
News sources: Japan Today, ANNnewsCH
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