Information or GOJ voice ?

Information: Japan to fingerprint visitors and foreign residents, workpermit.com

New rules requiring fingerprints for visitors and foreigners living in Japan will go into effect on 20 November 2007. The Japanese government says the procedure is a necessary security measure to prevent terrorist attacks inside the country.

The system is modelled after a similar United States program instituted in 2003 that requires travellers entering the country to provide fingerprints and facial photos when they apply for visas.
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However, the Japanese system goes further by requiring Japan's 2.1 million foreign residents, as well as visitors, to be fingerprinted and photographed when entering the country.

GOJ voice: Use fingerprints, photos to boost security, The Yomiuri Shimbun

The revised Immigration Control and Refugee Recognition Law will go into effect Tuesday, introducing new immigration checks that require foreign visitors to be fingerprinted and photographed when they enter the country.

The main objective of the revised law is to block terrorists and foreign criminals from entering the country. If it is proven to be effective, Japan's reputation as a safe country will be bolstered.

In the past, a man linked to Al-Qaida passed through Japan's immigration despite the fact there was an international warrant for his arrest, complete with his fingerprints. Such a blunder must not be repeated. Fingerprint data collected at immigration can be used in criminal investigations in cases in which police find fingerprints at the scene of a crime believed to have been committed by non-Japanese.

Together with strengthening immigration checks, we hope the government will take all possible means to ensure coastal security and prevent terrorism in this country.

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