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Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe speaks to reporters Sept. 15 at his official residence in Tokyo after a North Korean missile launch.   © Reuters

Japan's Abe making risky bet on snap election

Internal poll, close ally nudge him to make the tough decision

GAKU SHIMADA, Nikkei staff writer | Japan

TOKYO -- Facing less-than-stellar poll numbers, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is taking a huge gamble with plans to dissolve the lower house for a snap election in October.

It was no easy decision. He had many moments of self-doubt and equivocation. Ultimately, an internal survey suggesting decent results for the ruling coalition and reassurances from a trusted ally prompted him to make the call.

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