Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi on Tuesday congratulated Jin Murai on his election as Nagano governor.

Responding at the Tokyo headquarters of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party to Murai’s remarks on reorganizing the prefectural administration, Koizumi said: “I hope you fulfill this. I welcome your victory.”

Murai, a former veteran LDP lawmaker, was forced out of the political scene after voting against Koizumi’s postal privatization bills.

However, Tsutomu Takebe, LDP secretary general, told Murai on Tuesday that the party will fully support his administration.

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