Japan has a parliamentary government with a constitutional monarchy. Shinzo Abe, leader of the Liberal Democratic Party, became prime minister in 2012. Lower House elections in October 2017, which Prime Minister Abe’s party won with a large majority, were considered free and fair.
Civilian authorities maintained effective control over the security forces.
A human rights concern was criminal libel laws, although there was no evidence the government abused these laws to restrict public discussion during the reporting.
The government enforced laws prohibiting human rights abuses and prosecuted officials who committed them.