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Japanese and foreign residents of Tokyo and Osaka voiced hope Wednesday that new U.S. President Barack Obama will abandon the unilateral approach of his predecessor, George W. Bush, while some Japanese expressed concern that bilateral relations will be overshadowed by economic and military snags.

“I hope Obama will bring peace to the world and respect the authorities of the United Nations,” a Swedish businessman, 41, said in Tokyo, apparently in reference to the Iraqi conflict, which began in 2003 initially without U.N. backing.

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