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Japan's leader trying to prevent any challenge to existence of country's armed forces

Military called Self-Defense Forces after post-World War II pacifist constitution

CNN  — 

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Wednesday he aims to have his country’s pacifist constitution revised and a new version in effect by 2020.

It’s the first time Abe has put a clear time frame on revising the constitution, which contains language that bans Japan from maintaining armed forces.

The Japanese military is known as the Self-Defense Forces, but Abe said there is a contradiction between the constitution and the existence of the SDF.

“I believe that we must establish the status of the SDF explicitly in the constitution during our generation’s lifetime and leave no room for contending the SDF could be unconstitutional,” Abe said in a video message to a Tokyo forum marking the 70th anniversary of the constitution. “I strongly wish to make 2020 the year that the reborn Japan will make a new start.”

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Cosmetic changes

Japan’s current co