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Woman Lawmaker Agrees to Remove Beret in Parliament

November 13, 1991

TOKYO (AP) _ Legislator Yuriko Hase decided it was better to lose her hat than lose her seat in parliament.

The 44-year-old Socialist, who is rarely seen without a beret perched on her head, ran into trouble last week when she wore the topper to two lower house sessions.

The Steering Committee requested that she defer to regulations against wearing hats, overcoats or mufflers in the lower house chamber.

Ms. Hase’s aide, Sumiko Fujimura, said the lawmaker pointed out that Britain’s Princess Diana had worn a hat in the chamber on a 1986 visit, as did Princess Kiko of Japan last year.

Parliamentary authorities said the rule did not apply to the purely ceremonial occasions when the princesses attended.

Penalties for violation are not stipulated, but the offender could be banned from the chamber, officials said.

Ms. Fujimura said Ms. Hase agreed to set aside her beret for the time being after her party, the leading opposition group, promised to take up possible revision of the 44-year-old rule.

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