• Kyodo News

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Social Democratic Party lawmaker Seiji Mataichi withdrew his resignation as SDP deputy chief Wednesday, saying he has accepted party leader Mizuho Fukushima’s apology for “insufficient party management.”

“We have to unite to save the party from its crisis,” the Upper House lawmaker told an SDP executive meeting.

Mataichi’s move will allow Fukushima, who has been blamed for the SDP’s loss in the July Upper House poll and for the exit of popular lawmaker Kiyomi Tsujimoto, to remain party leader, analysts say.

At the party meeting, Fukushima said: “I feel great responsibility (for the party’s poll defeat). I will move forward while examining whether I did well enough in exercising party leadership.”

In late July, Mataichi tendered his resignation as the No. 2, saying the small party was incapable of reasserting itself under Fukushima.

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