Mass Resignation

Japan’s Cabinet resigned en masse on Monday, due to a reshuffle undertaken by Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda as he sought to improve relations with China and increase its popularity has decreased.

“Today in a special cabinet meeting, the prime minister told us that he was going to do a cabinet reshuffle,” said chief government spokesman Osamu Fujimura told reporters. “The resignation of all cabinet ministers have been collected.”

The reshuffle was widely broadcast by the Japanese media, and emerging as the popularity of the prime minister collapsed after fighting legislation related to double the sales tax.

The move also comes as Tokyo is involved in a dispute with Beijing over sovereignty of a group of islands in the East China Sea, known as the Senkakus in Japan and Diaoyus in China.

Several newspapers said that Noda is expected to raise Tanaka Makiko into his cabinet, a pro-Beijing woman who reflects his status as prime minister to harmonize relations with China in 1972.

Fujimura said the prime minister will meet with senior leaders of the Democratic Party of Japan in the evening, and held a press conference shortly afterwards, which is expected to be the moment of the announcement of his cabinet.

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