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Six candidates officially started campaigning early March 17 for a March 29 Lower House by-election to fill the Tokyo No. 4 constituency seat left vacant by Shokei Arai, who last month hanged himself shortly before he was to be arrested over illicit profits from Nikko Securities Co.

Both the ruling Liberal Democratic Party and the largest opposition group, Minyuren, plan to stage full-scale campaigns in the constituency as a prelude to the Upper House elections in July. The election comes in the wake of the LDP’s third consecutive victory in a recent gubernatorial race and Lower House by-elections in Nagasaki.

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