• Kyodo News

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With the country’s economic slide showing no signs of easing, a record number of Japanese turned to Shinto gods and Buddha for help during the New Year holidays, police statistics showed Friday.

A record 99.39 million people, up 1.21 million from last year, visited Shinto shrines and Buddhist temples throughout Japan during the first three days of 2009 to pray for happiness, the National Police Agency said.

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