TOKYO Nov 27 Japan's ruling party vowed on
Tuesday to defend the nation's interests with "cool-headed and
practical" diplomacy in a manifesto ahead of a Dec. 16 election
that sought to underscore a contrast with the hawkish rhetoric
of its main opposition rivals.
The Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) also reiterated its goal
of phasing out nuclear power by the 2030s - another policy where
it differs with the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), which
advocates further debate before deciding on Japan's energy mix.
While reaffirming a commitment to end deflation and achieve
growth targets similar to those adopted by the LDP, the
Democrats stopped short of prescribing a new inflation goal for
the Bank of Japan or suggesting changes to the central bank law.
The LDP, led by former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, tops
opinion polls with 22-25 percent of voters saying they will cast
their ballots for the once-dominant party. That is about 10-15
points ahead of the Democrats, who have struggled to close the
gap since Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda called the election for
parliament's lower house earlier this month.