Japanese power-broker to challenge premier

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The Independent Online

The power-broker in Japan's ruling party, Ichiro Ozawa, says he will challenge Prime Minister Naoto Kan for the leadership next month. Analysts warn that a leadership battle could destabilise the economy.

Mr Kan is fighting for his job after an election loss last month deprived the Democratic Party of Japan of a majority in the upper house. Allies of Mr Ozawa have called for a showdown in the election for party president on 14 September. The winner is likely to be the Prime Minister because Mr Ozawa faces indictment in a political funding scandal.

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