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Japan poll voting begins days after Abe assassination

Tokyo, July 10 (UNI): Two days after the assassination of former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, voting for a House of Councillors election began on Sunday.

According to Kyodo News, the outcome of the triennial election is a gauge of voter confidence roughly nine months into the government of Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, who has set a goal for his ruling Liberal Democratic Party and coalition partner Komeito to retain a majority in the upper house.

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The win will strengthen Kishida’s grip on power at a time when the country reels with post-Covid pandemic effects such as surging energy and food prices.

The impact of Abe’s death on the election remains uncertain, though it united political leaders across their party lines in vowing not to yield to violence intended to quash the freedom of speech as campaigning drew to a close, Kyodo News reported.

The voters will cast two ballots — one to choose electoral district representatives and the other under proportional representation. The voting will end at 8 pm.

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