Portugal PM to carry on, seek solution to political instability

LISBON Tue Jul 2, 2013 3:38pm EDT

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LISBON (Reuters) - Portugal's Prime Minister Pedro Passos Coelho will stay at the helm of the government and work to overcome a political crisis after his foreign minister and head of a coalition party tendered his resignation, which the premier refused to accept.

"I have not asked the president to remove the foreign minister," Passos Coelho told the nation on Tuesday in a televised address, adding that he will seek "conditions to assure stability" jointly with the coalition partner CDS-PP in coming hours. Passos Coelho said he would travel to Berlin on Wednesday as prime minister.

Foreign Minister Paulo Portas resigned in a heavy blow to the center-right coalition that has kept the country's international bailout on track.

(Reporting By Andrei Khalip, editing by Axel Bugge)

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