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Tuesday, 24 October, 2000, 16:49 GMT 17:49 UK
Former PM Heath to retire

The former British prime minister, Edward Heath, has announced that he will retire from politics at the next general election.

Sir Edward, who is eighty-four, is the longest-serving member of parliament -- he was first elected in 1950.

As the Conservative prime minister between 1970 and 1974 he was responsible for taking Britain into the European Economic Community -- the forerunner of the European Union.

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