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Japan’s Prime Minister Announces Intention to Resign

Prime Minister Naoto Kan of Japan announced his plans to resign on Friday, local news media reported, a long-expected move that brings uncertainty to a country still recovering from the natural and nuclear disasters from last March.

Mr. Kan formally announced his intention to leave as leader of the ruling Democratic Party at a meeting of senior party members, the Kyodo News Agency reported.

“I will step down as head of the party as I promised on June 2,” Mr. Kan was quoted as saying at the party meeting. “Once the new leader is picked, I will also resign as prime minister.”

The Democratic Party’s election to choose a successor to Mr. Kan will take place on Monday, Kyodo reported. The new leader is expected to be appointed prime minister as soon as Tuesday.

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