Four conservative groups within the Liberal Democratic Party formally launched a new group Friday, demanding a large-scale Cabinet reshuffle and a new party lineup when the LDP forms a coalition with the Liberal Party.

The move is expected to intensify infighting within the LDP concerning a planned Cabinet reshuffle. Seventy-eight LDP Diet members attended the meeting marking the establishment of the group, while 25 were represented by proxies.

Former Chief Cabinet Secretary Seiroku Kajiyama, who was chosen as head of the league, expressed support for Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi and his plan to form a coalition government with the Liberals.

At the same time, he demanded that a major reshuffle be implemented at the time of the LDP-Liberal coalition’s formation. “We have to take the initiative in promoting the LDP-Liberal Party coalition and to make an effort to establish a stable political base in order to exercise political leadership,” Kajiyama told the inaugural meeting.

Former Construction Minister Shizuka Kamei, appointed secretary general of the league, told a news conference after the meeting that it is important to gather forces from the whole party, suggesting that Obuchi give some Cabinet posts and party executive posts to members of the league.

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