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Ailing Japan opposition picks Maehara as new leader

Conservative former foreign minister to take on Abe at next election

Seiji Maehara   © Kyodo

TOKYO -- Japan's largest opposition party on Friday picked former Foreign Minister Seiji Maehara as its new leader. 

The traditionally center-left Democratic Party will now seek to rebuild itself into a credible opposition group capable of challenging Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's Liberal Democratic Party in national elections due by the end of 2018.  

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