Japan Economics Minister diagnosed with early stage cancer, but will remain in post

Japanese Economics Minister Akira Amari (above) said on Thursday, Dec 5, 2013, that he has been diagnosed with early stage tongue cancer. -- FILE PHOTO: AP / KYODO NEWS
Japanese Economics Minister Akira Amari (above) said on Thursday, Dec 5, 2013, that he has been diagnosed with early stage tongue cancer. -- FILE PHOTO: AP / KYODO NEWS

TOKYO (Reuters) - Japanese Economics Minister Akira Amari said on Thursday that he has been diagnosed with early stage tongue cancer.

Mr Amari, speaking to reporters, said he could have surgery as early as next week and that he could possibly return to work about four weeks after surgery.

He said he offered to resign as the cancer could potentially be serious, but he will retain his post as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe had asked him to do so.