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Japan election

Japan parliamentary race hits record low for candidates under 40

Diversity in politics remains elusive under system that favors old guard

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida dissolved the lower house on Oct. 14, paving the way for the upcoming national election. Of 1,051 registered candidates, 99 are in their 20s and 30s.   © AP

TOKYO -- Candidates in their 20s and 30s make up 9.4% and women less than 20% of those running in Japan's lower house election on Oct. 31, highlighting the country's continued struggles with incorporating new and more diverse viewpoints into its politics.

Of the 1,051 registered candidates who began campaigning on Tuesday, 99 are in their 20s and 30s -- falling below the 10% mark for the first time. The total number of candidates is the smallest of any lower house election since single-seat districts were introduced in 1996.

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