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Pressure mounts on Japan PM to quit

Pressure mounted on Sunday for unpopular Prime Minister Naoto Kan to step down soon and even a senior member of his own party warned the lameduck leader not to stay in office much longer.

Kan’s early departure would ease the way for a coalition with the opposition that could enact a bill enabling the government to issue more debt to fund this year’s $1 trillion budget and pass an extra budget to pay for rebuilding the region devastated by a March 11 earthquake and tsunami.

But it is far from clear whether a temporary and likely unwieldy grouping could tackle longer term problems such as Japan’s massive public debt, already twice the $5 trillion economy.

"He (Kan) has clearly said he will resign … so it is now up to the prime minister to decide (the timing)," DPJ Secretary-General Katsuya Okada said.

"If that is very different from what most people think, I intend, as secretary general, to tell him to quit."

Read the rest of the story: Pressure mounts on Japan PM to quit amid coalition talk.