Bush to visit Japan next week

TOKYO: Former US president George W. Bush plans to visit Japan next week to meet former prime minister Junichiro Koizumi, Kyodo News reported on Saturday.

Bush is expected to make his first visit to Japan since he left office on Tuesday and Wednesday at the invitation of a private-sector organisation, Kyodo said, quoting Japanese and US sources.

Bush is also expected to make a speech and watch a baseball game in Tokyo, the sources said.

Koizumi, one of the nation's most popular premiers in modern times, had maintained cozy personal ties with Bush. Koizumi retired from politics earlier this year.

Immediate confirmation of the report was not available.