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Powerful DPJ members call for new leadership vote

JIJI

Democratic Party of Japan bigwigs, including former Deputy Prime Minister Katsuya Okada, called Tuesday for an early election for the leadership of the opposition party.

At a key party meeting, Okada and former Defense Minister Toshimi Kitazawa said the current leadership team led by President Banri Kaieda are incapable of rebuilding the struggling party.

They said the DPJ should hold a leadership vote before the Diet convenes a special session this fall, instead of waiting until Kaieda reaches the end of his term in September 2015.

Kaieda faced a similar rebellion following the end of the ordinary Diet session last month. Moves to oust him may be rekindled now that powerful members have openly called for a leadership vote.