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Kensaku Hogen, director general of an institute affiliated with the Foreign Ministry, has been appointed as the United Nations undersecretary general for communication and public information, ministry officials said Tuesday.

Foreign Minister Keizo Obuchi welcomed the appointment, saying it is consistent with the government’s hope of increasing the number of Japanese holding senior U.N. posts. Obuchi said in a statement that the post is important for the operation of the U.N., because it was created by Secretary General Kofi Annan to promote the reform of the world body.

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