Former Prime Ministers Morihiro Hosokawa and Tsutomu Hata announced Friday that they have agreed to form a new political group in the Lower House before the end of the year.

Hosokawa, who quit the largest opposition party Shinshinto in June, and Hata, head of the Taiyo Party, told a news conference that they plan to invite independents in the Lower House who also defected from Shinshinto to join with Taiyo Party members to create the new parliamentary group. They were joined by Ryuichi Doi, a Lower House member of another minor opposition group, the Democratic Reform Party. Members of the DRP will also join the new group.

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