Japan ruling party candidate elected Tokyo governor, aiding Abe




 
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February 9th, 2014  
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Topic: Japan ruling party candidate elected Tokyo governor, aiding Abe


By Linda Sieg TOKYO (Reuters) - A candidate backed by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe won Sunday's election for governor of Tokyo, frustrating a rival's efforts to make the vote a referendum on the Japanese leader's pro-nuclear energy policy nearly three years after the Fukushima disaster The widely-expected victory by former health minister Yoichi Masuzoe comes as a relief for Abe, who had suffered a rare setback in another local election last month. The 65-year-old Masuzoe, backed by Abe's Liberal Democratic Party, was the winner by a wide margin, according to media exit polls. The winner's most prominent rival was former prime minister Morihiro Hosokawa, 76, who came out of retirement to run and - with support from charismatic ex-premier Junichiro Koizumi - had put opposition to atomic energy at the core of his platform in the race to lead the capital city of 13.3 million people. Hosokawa came in a close third after lawyer Kenji Utsunomiya, who also opposes nuclear power, NHK public TV said.




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