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Japan's Abe calls a snap election

Prime minister is seeking a mandate on social spending and constitutional change

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe addresses the press on Sept. 25. (Photo by Koji Uema)

TOKYO Japan is set for an October election. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, speaking at a press conference on Sept. 25, officially announced his intention to dissolve the lower house at the beginning of the extraordinary Diet session starting on Sept. 28.

Abe's campaign will likely focus on education and constitutional amendment. The prime minister intends to partially reassign revenue from a consumption tax hike slated for October 2019 from government-debt repayment to providing free education, and to write Japan's Self-Defense Forces into the country's war-renouncing constitution.

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