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Koizumi`s election as P.M. almost assured

Posted April. 24, 2001 11:55,   


Former Japanese Health Minister Junichiro Koizumi, hopeful to become Japan`s next prime minister, scored a crushing victory in the ruling Liberal Democratic Party`s regional elections and was virtually assured of winning the party`s presidential nomination for the election slated for Apr. 24.

The election returns showed that Koizumi garnered 123 of the 141 votes up for grabs by carrying 41 out of 47 districts, where ballot tallies had been completed as of Monday night.

Meanwhile, Koizumi said Sunday that if the Constitution were interpreted differently, Japan could exercise collective self-defense rights.

Shim Kyu-Sun ksshim@donga.com