TOKYO Tim Frazier Jersey , Aug. 21 (Xinhua) -- Campaigning for Japan's main opposition Democratic Party leadership began Monday as the party seeks to bolster itself amid concerns that an exodus of members recently may further weaken the party's standing.
Former foreign minister, Seiji Maehara, 55, and former chief Cabinet secretary, Yukio Edano, 53, both filed their candidacies on Monday for the party's top post.
The race for the party's leadership post follows current leader Renho suddenly announcing her intention to resign to account for the party's poor standing in local and national politics after being in the post for less than a year.
The ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) headed by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has been beset with scandals and gaffes, some of which have implicated Abe himself, others of which saw his former defense minister step down.
But the Democratic Party failed to capitalize on the LDP's plunging public support rate and suffered a heavy defeat in last month's Tokyo metropolitan assembly election.
This acted as a catalyst for a number of Democratic Party lawmakers to leave en masse and for Renho to announce her resignation to account for the party's recent woeful performances.
Renho's successor will be decided at a presidential election to be held on Sept. 1.
Ballots are expected to be cast by around 140 Democratic Party lawmakers and more than 120 potential candidates from the party for national elections, at an extraordinary convention to be held on Sept. 1.
In addition, votes will be cast by in excess of 1,500 members of local assemblies and some 228,000 party members and supporters, with votes being cast and counted on the same day.
The Democratic Party's two front runners are both political veterans and held important portfolios when the party was in power in the three years prior to being ousted by the LDP in 2012.
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TIANJIN, Aug. 23 (Xinhua) -- The 13th Chinese National Games, known as China's mini-Olympics, will be the most tested version of the national sports gala, a senior official from the organizing committee said here on Wednesday.
According to the organizers, a total of 2900 tests will be carried out, marking a 12.6 percent increase in the number of the tests compared with the last edition four years ago in Shenyang, Liaoning.
Chen Zhiyu, director of the Games' anti-doping department, said new testing method will be adopted in Tianjin.
"The meet will for the first time introduce the urine growth hormone releasing hormone (GHRH) test," said Chen, also deputy director of China's Anti-Doping Agency (CHINADA).
"We set up an anti-doping department of 787 staff, which will carry out the heaviest anti-doping work," he added.
The anti-doping team, including 301 anti-doping officials, will be divided into 49 groups working in venues and the athletes' village.
All the testing samples will be collected daily and sent to the CHINADA lab in Beijing. The lab will work around the clock to ensure the timely delivery of test report.
"Anybody tested positive will be severely punished," said Chen, showing the country's determination to weed out doping cheats.
The 13th National Games will kick off this Sunday and go through to Sept. 8 in northern city of Tianjin.
The National Games, inaugurated in 1959, drew teams from all provinces, municipalities and autonomous regions. According to the organizing committee, the 13th event has attracted 10,217 athletes to participate in 33 sports and 417 events.
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