Unification Church Files Lawsuit Against “Miyaneya” Station and its President | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Unification Church Files Lawsuit Against “Miyaneya” Station and its President

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Miyaneya continues to report without flinching in the face of a lawsuit from the former Unification Church. The station, including host Seiji Miyane, is very enthusiastic.

“Unification Church” (Family Federation for World Peace and Unification) held a press conference on September 29 and filed a lawsuit claiming that the lawsuit constitutes defamation.

The three lawsuits were filed by (1) Masaki Kito, attorney at law, and Yomiuri TV, (2) Kentaro Motomura, attorney at law, and Yomiuri TV, and (3) Hideki Yashiro, attorney at law, and TBS.

(1) was a statement made by attorney Kito on the July 20 broadcast of “Miyaneya” (produced by Yomiuri TV and affiliated with NTV).

(2) is a statement made by lawyer Kito in a July 20 broadcast of “Miyaneya” (produced by Yomiuri TV and broadcast by Nippon Television Network Corporation), in which he said, “They even let their followers engage in prostitution to raise funds.”

The second is a statement made by Attorney Motomura in the September 2 broadcast of “Miyaneya” (produced by Yomiuri TV and aired on NTV).

The judicial decision has already recognized that the Unification Church’s missionary activities themselves are illegal. 

The lawyer’s statement is a reference to the Unification Church’s “illegal organization” as described in the following paragraph.

The third is a statement made by lawyer Yashiro in a September 1 broadcast of “Hiruobi” (TBS), in which he said, “The external criminal acts that this cult is committing…”

The statements are said to be such as “The external criminal acts that this cult is committing…”

They are each seeking 22 million yen in damages, as well as a website and an apology broadcast.

Among TV programs, “Miyaneya” has been enthusiastic in its thorough pursuit of the Unification Church. On the day the lawsuit was announced at the press conference, after explaining the content of the lawsuit in a straightforward manner, the host, Seiji Miyane, said.

“The program will continue to address the essential issues of the church, such as excessive donations by the former Unification Church, relief for victims, and the church’s involvement with politicians, as it has in the past,” he said.

Immediately following the announcement of his future policy, he introduced the next section, “This is the next section,” which introduced the involvement of Hosoda, Speaker of the House of Representatives, and the Unification Church.

This stance was praised on social networking sites, with the phrase “Go for it, #Miyaneya!”

is trending on SNS and other social networking sites.

As you can see from the contents of the three lawsuits, the Unification Church is frightened only by the possibility of dissolution. In the unlikely event that the acts in question are found to be problematic, the competent cultural agency can submit a request for dissolution to the court.

They are not so much concerned about connections with politicians, etc., and only file a lawsuit for statements regarding conduct that may increase the momentum for consideration of dissolution. In short, it seems that they are eager to defend their status as a religious corporation.

How effective is this lawsuit in curbing media coverage? Will it serve as a lesson to others, and will the news coverage of the Unification Church by the various news stations cease?

However, Yomiuri TV, led by “Miyaneya,” is not concerned at all, but rather intends to step up its pursuit of the case.

As I said on the program, we will basically continue to report on the Unification Church as we have in the past. The president of the TV station has already given his approval, so I feel that they are now more serious about it. Of course, we will need to take more careful in gathering facts, but we must report the news as a matter of justice for those who are suffering from Unification Church donations and other problems.

On the other hand, if we do a Unification Church story, the ratings are quite good, so we can make a difference in the back program. I feel energized from the public’s support for Miyaneya. The day after the press conference on the lawsuit, we invited attorney Kito as a guest (laughs),” from Yomiuri TV insider.

It seems that the Unification Church has indeed added fuel to the fire of Miyaneya.

Naturally, a lawsuit would be costly and time-consuming. Still, the church is able to report the news so forcefully because of the interest of viewers and the public behind it.

  • PHOTO Yuya Kawasaki

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