According to the Kyodo News agency on Thursday, Fujimori was granted a Peruvian passport last month some five years after fleeing his homeland to Japan after his government crumbled amid a corruption scandal.

Peru's Congress has since adopted a resolution banning him from holding public office until 2010, but Fujimori has pledged before to return and seek re-election in next year's presidential ballot despite the prohibition.

Peruvian prosecutors have also petitioned Japan to extradite Fujimori so he can face 22 criminal charges on allegations ranging from abuse of power and embezzlement to sanctioning a paramilitary death squad.

Beyond extradition

Fujimori, the son of Japanese immigrants, has been shielded from extradition by Japanese citizenship granted to him after his arrival. Tokyo has repeatedly said Japanese citizens cannot be extradited under Japanese law.

President Toledo cannot seek
re-election under the law

He seized dictatorial power in April 1992 by sending tanks to shut down Peru's Congress and judiciary - a move he argued was necessary to fight leftist rebels and end economic chaos.

Under international pressure, he convoked a constitutional assembly, creating the unicameral Congress and in November 1992 held new congressional elections. He was re-elected to a second term in a landslide victory three years later.

Under Peru's current one-term limit, present Peruvian President Alejandro Toledo cannot seek immediate re-election.