Posted June. 04, 2010 14:48,
Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama and political mastermind Ichiro Ozawa have both resigned, and both men have apparently ruffled each others feathers.
Id already made up my mind to resign around ten days ago and persuaded Ozawa to quit with me, Hatoyama said, but his explanation is considered half correct.
Hatoyama probably wanted to remain prime minister, and even mentioned his policies Sunday when the Social Democratic Party left the ruling coalition. He said Monday, Theres no doubt Ill remain prime minister after a meeting with Ozawa, the secretary-general of the ruling Democratic Party of Japan.
After a second meeting with Ozawa Tuesday, Hatoyama gave a thumbs up when asked if he would keep his position. His behavior angered lawmakers of his party, however.
Nippon Television Network Corp. interpreted Hatoyomas behavior as a signal that he would remain in office. Japanese lawmakers had just watched the situation but eventually turned on him, with one saying, He doesnt understand how seriously the circumstances have worsened.
Ozawa called Hatoyama late Tuesday evening and effectively gave him an ultimatum, asking, Are you willing to accept a motion for your dismissal? The next morning, Hatoyama finally announced his intent to resign.
Belatedly, the prime minister said he gave a thumbs up since he wanted others to know he was not discouraged, but it was too late.
Others say Hatoyama expressed his will to resign to Ozawa Tuesday. Aware he had lost Ozawas confidence, the prime minister asked Ozawa to quit with him.
Ozawa had secretly visited the prime ministers official residence on the evening of May 27, the day before Social Democratic Party leader Mizuho Fukushima was dismissed over the dispute over the relocation of the U.S. Marines base in Futenma.
Ozawa tried to persuade Hatoyama, saying, We wont win the elections for the House of Councilors without the Social Democratic Partys support. Well lose three million votes.
Hatoyama rejected Ozawas suggestion, however, and this enraged Ozawa, who was trying to ensure his partys victory in the upcoming elections. A source close to Ozawa said, Hatoyama pushed Ozawa to the limits of his patience.
Ozawa then began preparing for a post-Hatoyama government, and this explains why he released his plan to elect a new prime minister so fast.
In his second meeting with Ozawa Tuesday, Hatoyama realized that he could no longer stay in office and asked Ozawa to step down with him. Experts have offered different explanations for Ozawas resignation.
Hatoyama also told one of his ministers that it was hard to convince his wife of his decision to resign, suggesting she did not welcome his decision.