Japan birth drive sparks online debate

Japan’s government has made tackling its falling birth rate a top priority, but with few women involved in official debate on the issue, some are making themselves heard on social media.

Japan recorded fewer than 800,000 births last year, the lowest in the country of 125 million since records began.

The prime minister has warned the trend threatens “whether we can continue to function as a society”, and fresh focus on the issue has sparked countless articles.

But one in particular, noting Japan has the highest ratio in the OECD of women aged 50 who have never had children, triggered an outpouring of responses using the hashtag “life-long childlessness”.

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