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Leading figure in Labour Party quits Parliament

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March 27, 2013 05:32 AM EST | AP


LONDON — Former U.K. Foreign Secretary David Miliband, a leading figure in Britain's opposition Labour Party, is stepping down as a lawmaker to head the International Rescue Committee in New York.

Miliband had long been considered a possible front-runner for prime minister, but in 2010 lost the party leadership contest to his brother, Ed. Since then, he has stayed out of the limelight as his brother works to unseat the Conservative-led coalition government.

Miliband says it is time to resign from his Parliamentary seat and take the opportunity to lead the charity. The committee was set up in the 1930s to help those fleeing the Nazis, and responds to humanitarian crises in 40 countries.

Ed Miliband said Wednesday that British politics will be "a poorer place" without his brother.