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Japan parliament to vote in new PM on Sept. 16

JAPAN'S parliament will meet on Sept. 16 to vote in Democratic Party leader Yukio Hatoyama as prime minister, senior lawmaker Tadamori Oshima said today.

Hatoyama's Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) won a sweeping victory in a lower house election on Sunday, ousting the conservative Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) for only the second time in more than 50 years and breaking a deadlock in parliament, where the Democrats and small allies control the upper house.

The Democrats have pledged to put more money in the hands of consumers to boost growth, cut wasteful spending and prise control of policy from bureaucrats, often blamed for Japan's failure to cope with deep problems such as its ageing population.

The wealthy grandson of a former prime minister, Hatoyama, 62, has advocated revising Japan's pacifist constitution to acknowledge the nation's right to defend itself and said Tokyo's foreign policy was too subservient to Washington.

He has also raised eyebrows with a recent essay railing against the "unrestrained market fundamentalism" of US-led globalisation, but has sought to play down those comments since the election win, saying he was not anti-American.


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