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Japan’s main opposition party leader steps down after parliamentary election defeat

December 15, 2014, 10:18 UTC+3 TOKYO
The ruling Liberal Democratic Party of Japan, led by current Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, and the New Komeito party won a total of 326 out of 475 seats in the lower house of parliament
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Leader of the Democratic Party of Japan, Banri Kaieda

Leader of the Democratic Party of Japan, Banri Kaieda

© EPA/CHRISTOPHER JUE

TOKYO, December 15. /TASS/. The leader of the Democratic Party of Japan, the country’s main opposition party, Banri Kaieda has officially announced that he resigns after a defeat in Sunday’s elections to the lower house of parliament.

“I confirm that I quit as the leader of the Democratic Party. The results of the elections have shown that citizens of Japan do not want a change of the political course of current Prime Minister Shinzo Abe,” Kaieda said.

The politician, who has led the party since 2012, wished the fellow party members to stay united and prepare for elections to the local government bodies due this spring.

At Sunday’s elections, the ruling Liberal Democratic Party of Japan, led by Abe, and the New Komeito party won a total of 326 out of 475 seats in the lower house of parliament, which chooses the prime minister and has virtual control of the budgeting process.

The Democratic Party received 73 seats, an 11-seat increase compared with the general election held in 2012.

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