“It is absolutely unacceptable that a prime minister changed the interpretation of Japan’s Constitution, which has protected the country’s peace over the past 70 years following the end of World War II”.

Under the new bills being moved forward by the Abe administration, the Japanese military will be able to engage in armed conflicts overseas, and can also be sent in to help defend the country’s allies, even if Japan isn’t under threat.

The bills now must be passed in the upper house of parliament and Abe’s Liberal Democratic Party-led coalition has the two-thirds majority required for its adoption. “The Japanese public have finally caught on to how manipulative Abe can be when it comes to policies and laws that he believes should go ahead”.

The protestors gathered at the Hibiya Park, Diet building and the prime minister’s official residence, shouting “Abe step down”, “definitely oppose war” and “protect constitution”.

On Friday, the Japanese bicameral Diet decided to set up a special panel at the upper house to debate the security bills.

“I now see many young people who are anxious about the future of this country, thought about what they could do, and have begun to act”, he said. Bill Hubard, chief economist at Bankor wrote, “unfortunately, as the press note today, PM Abe seems far busier with national stadiums and national security than economic reforms”.

The worldwide Monetary Fund warned Thursday that Japan’s economy is unlikely to grow as strongly as the government wishes in the medium term due partly to a labor shortage in the graying society. To this end, Japan released its annual defense White Paper on Tuesday and a large proportion of it made mention of China and, essentially, pointed the finger of blame at its neighbor for the current severity of the security environment.

Abe has said there is no clear definition of aggression and that he was not necessarily standing by the 1995 statement, although he later promised to keep the statement following protests from China and South Korea.

“There is the possibility that the Abe Cabinet is facing a terminal tipping point in its public support”, Mr Stephen Church of Haitong worldwide Research in Tokyo, said by email. The legislation package was rammed through the lower house last week.