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Costa Rican VP Chinchilla Expected to Resign

Reports from Costa Rica say Vice President and Justice Minister Laura Chinchilla is expected to resign in the coming weeks to seek the presidency in 2010 as a candidate of the National Liberation Party, or PLN.

It is not clear, however, when Chinchilla will announce her resignation.

The reports say Transportation Minister Viviana Martin is a possible candidate to replace the 49-year-old Chinchilla, who has previously served as public security minister.

Others who are expected to seek the presidential nomination of the PLN include former Security Minister Fernando Berrocal and a mayor, Johnny Araya.

Costa Rica's current president is Nobel Peace laureate Oscar Arias, who took office in 2006 for a second time. He first served as president from 1986 to 1990.

President Arias is also a member of the PLN, but under Costa Rican law, he is not eligible to run for the presidency again in 2010.