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Early elections pit former against current Japan PM

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Early elections pit former against current Japan PM

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Early elections have been called in Japan by the country’s sixth prime minister in six years.

Yoshihiko Noda has been forced to dissolve parliament after his government ran out of money and needed support from the opposition LDP to approve the issuing of bonds.

Noda’s DJP party lost its majority in the upper house of parliament and has had to rely on LDP when passing legislation.

Noda’s rival is former prime minister and leader of the LDP Shinzo Abe. Polls show the conservative politician as the favourite.

However, there are worries Noda’s premiership could further strain Tokyo’s relationship with Beijing. Japan and China are locked in a territorial dispute over islands in the East China Sea.

Elections will take place on December 16.