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Malaysia PM dissolves Parliament to hold elections

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By Sean Yoong, AP

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — Malaysia’s prime minister dissolved Parliament on Wednesday to call for general elections that will be contested between a coalition that has ruled for nearly 57 years and a resurgent opposition whose pledge to form a cleaner government has resonated with millions of citizens.

The polls are widely expected within a month after Prime Minister Najib Razak said in a nationally televised address that he had obtained royal consent from Malaysia’s constitutional monarch to dissolve Parliament immediately.

Najib used his speech to urge more than 13 million eligible voters in Malaysia to give his National Front coalition a strong mandate and to reject opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim’s three-party alliance.

“Do not gamble with the fate of our children and grandchildren,” Najib said, adding that he planned to travel to “all corners of the country” in the weeks ahead to speak to voters and win their confidence.

The Election Commission is expected to meet within a week to set a polling date and determine when formal campaigning can begin. The National Front’s current five-year mandate had been scheduled to end April 30.

At stake are 222 […]