Prime Minister Ryutaro Hashimoto declared his candidacy August 28 for re-election as president of the Liberal Democratic Party, expressing hopes of continuing to promote reforms while maintaining the current tripartite alliance.

He expressed his wish to run for the position at an LDP Executive Council meeting, and then met the press to make the announcement. “I told the executive board that I want to continue fulfilling the prime minister’s responsibility as LDP president, if permitted,” Hashimoto said at the press conference. Until August 27, he had deflected press questions about whether he would run, saying he was too busy to think about the matter.

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