• Kyodo

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Japan will maintain its economic assistance to Peru despite a recent presidential election that international observers say was rigged, the Japanese Ambassador here promised President Alberto Fujimori on Wednesday, Japanese diplomats said.

Takashi Kiya met with Fujimori at the president’s official residence for about 30 minutes. The discussion focused on whether Japan would continue economic and technical cooperation, which Kiya reportedly assured Fujimori would happen.

The meeting was widely seen as an expression of the Japanese government’s support for the outcome of the May 28 election, which gave Fujimori a third five-year term.

The meeting took place following Tuesday’s conclusion of a general meeting of the Organization of American States, which effectively endorsed Fujimori’s election victory.

During the election campaign, rival candidate Alejandro Toledo urged his supporters to refrain from voting. About a third of the ballots were declared invalid.

Wednesday’s meeting was Fujimori’s first with an ambassador from a major country since the election.