New Zealand election date announced

15:32, February 02, 2011      

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New Zealand Prime Minister John Key announced on Wednesday that this year's general election would be held on Nov. 26.

Key announced the date at a special press conference at the Beehive on Wednesday afternoon following the first major caucus meeting of the year at his official residence, Premier House.

The date had been widely tipped as it would allow a five week election campaign to be held after the final of the Rugby World Cup.

Key has ended speculation over whether he would be prepared to work with Winston Peters or his political party, New Zealand First.

He said he spent some time thinking about it over the summer break and considering whether any thing has changed, but has now ruled out working with Peters or his party altogether.

The Rugby World Cup ends on October 23 and the House of Parliament is likely to rise on October 6.

The official campaign-date launch hasn't been set, but Key said a four-week campaign was likely.

It was unusual for a prime minister to announce an election date so far in advance.

Source: Xinhua
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