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Abe moves closer to third term as ex-foreign minister bows out

Instead of joining the race, Kishida will support Japan's prime minister

Fumio Kishida, left, decided to support Shinzo Abe instead of challenging him in the Liberal Democratic Party presidential election this September.

TOKYO -- With a key rival passing on the ruling party's leadership race this fall, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe now looks increasingly likely to secure a third consecutive term at the nation's helm.

Former Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida announced on Tuesday that he will not run in the Liberal Democratic Party presidential election in September. "I decided the best thing to do is to work on various political challenges and make contributions along with Prime Minister Abe," he told a news conference.

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