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Former posts and telecommunications minister Noboru Minowa died at a Sapporo hospital Sunday, sources close to him said Monday. He was 82.

The cause of death was not immediately available.

After serving as a doctor, Minowa, a native of Hokkaido, was elected to the Lower House for the first time in 1967 and served as a House of Representatives member of the Liberal Democratic Party for eight terms until 1990.

While serving in the Lower House, he assumed several defense-related posts, including parliamentary vice minister of the Defense Agency.

In 2004, Minowa filed a lawsuit against the government, arguing that the dispatch of the Self-Defense Forces to Iraq violated the Constitution’s war-renouncing Article 9 and that it would greatly increase the possibility of Japanese being targeted by terrorists.

Minowa had been in the hospital since he fell at his home in Otaru, Hokkaido, in November 2004, the sources said.

His funeral will be held at 1 p.m. Wednesday at Ryutokuji Temple in Otaru.

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