• Kyodo

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Merchandise featuring images of Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi went on sale this week at a department store in his hometown of Yokosuka, Kanagawa Prefecture. Officials at the Saikaya department store said they are hoping for strong sales from “Koizumi goods” — all of which bear Koizumi’s likeness — following the gains made by the tripartite ruling coalition, led by his Liberal Democratic Party, in last Sunday’s House of Councilors election.

About 10 kinds of Koizumi products are for sale, including handkerchiefs priced at 480 yen, mugs at 880 yen and badges at 180 yen. They are the store’s own merchandise and approved for sale by his office. Store officials said the number of stuffed Koizumi toys, priced at 20,000 yen, will be limited to 100, but the overall types of Koizumi goods will be increased to about 20, including buns with his likeness.

According to the officials, about 400 items worth some 200,000 yen were sold in three hours after the store opened at 10 a.m. Monday.

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