Japan builds case to dissolve scandal-hit Unification Church

TOKYO, Nov 22 (Nikkei) - The case against the Unification Church is strong. Testimonials from former members such as Ogawa have been making headlines in Japan since Abe's death.

This is not the first time the church's practices have come under fire. The group's "spiritual sales" fundraising tactics have been the subject of controversy since the 1980s, when the church was first accused of cajoling Japanese members into donating large sums in return for the promise of salvation.

But the church's long-standing relationship with the LDP, along with the right to freedom of religion enshrined in Japan's constitution, have thus far protected the group from dissolution. When asked about the investigation, a representative for the Unification Church told Nikkei Asia that the group implores the government "never to violate the right to freedom of religion."

Experts say that dissolving the church would not infringe upon members' religious freedoms, as it would simply change the group's legal standing, not prevent people from becoming followers or practicing their faith. ...continue reading

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