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Expats vote at embassies, consulates

Kyodo

Expatriate voters began visiting Japanese embassies and consulates around the world Friday to cast their ballots for the July 21 House of Councilors election.

Jun Makihara, 55, who stopped by Japan’s consulate general in New York, said he would vote for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party. “If the LDP scores a major victory and turns the Abe government into a long-term regime, it will probably be a good thing,” he said.

In London, a 35-year-old Japanese businessman who has lived in the city for two years said at the Japanese Embassy that he is not yet sure how much of an impact Abe’s economic policies, aka “Abenomics,” are having. He asked that his name be withheld.

At Japan’s embassy in Seoul, a Japanese man, 33, who works for a local firm and also requested anonymity, noted, “I will feel relieved if Japan’s relations with neighboring countries are normalized and stabilized through this election.”

And at the Japanese Embassy in Beijing, Miyuki Otsuka, 46, a Japanese national and inhabitant of China for 17 years, touched on the Senkakus clash that erupted last fall between Tokyo and Beijing.

“Last year, I realized for the first time that Japanese politics affect us so much,” Otsuka said before casting her vote.