Let elderly people 'hurry up and die,' says Japanese minister
From online dispatches
Newly appointed Japanese Finance Minister Taro Aso. EPA Photo
Japanese Finance Minister Taro Aso has provoked anger after suggesting it would be better if elderly citizens hurried up and died lest they act as a drain on the budget, The Guardian reported yesterday.
"Heaven forbid if you are forced to live on when you want to die. I would wake up feeling increasingly bad knowing that [treatment] was all being paid for by the government," Aso said. “The problem won't be solved unless you let them hurry up and die."
Aso made the comment as he registered his displeasure with the government’s budget plans to provide health services to elderly people.
The minister has reportedly offended tens of millions of voters with his words in a country where almost a quarter of the population of 128 million is aged over 60.