Long-serving New Zealand PM to step down

In a surprise announcement, New Zealand Prime Minister John Key said Monday he would step down and not complete his fourth term if his National Party wins next year’s election. He backed his deputy Bill English to succeed him. The 55-year old Key cited family reasons and said he would also resign from parliament next year. The pro-American leader oversaw New Zealand’s economic recovery from the global financial crisis and caoamitous earthquakes. New Zealand is a member of the Five Eyes intelligence alliance with Australia, Canada, Britain and the US.

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