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Congressman John Conyers to retire after harassment accusations: reports

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U.S. congressman John Conyers, the longest serving member of the House of Representatives, will announce on Tuesday he does not plan to run for re-election, U.S. media said following accusations of sexual harassment against the Michigan Democrat.

Conyers is expected to make the announcement on a local radio show, the New York Times reported citing a relative. Other local media also reported the plans, citing sources close to Conyers.

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His lawyer earlier said on Twitter that Conyers would make an announcement at 10:15 a.m (1515 GMT).

“He is not resigning. He is going to retire,” Conyers’ great-nephew Ian, a Michigan state senator, told the Times, adding that he planned to run for the seat in Congress himself.

The House Ethics Committee last week opened an investigation into Conyers, 88, after he said his office had resolved a harassment case of a former staffer with a payment but no admission of guilt.

Conyers has denied the allegations of sexual misconduct.

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Congress has been reviewing policies on how to handle sexual harassment complaints after a string of cases involving prominent figures in the U.S. media, Hollywood and politics.

Conyers, a founding member of the Congressional Black Caucus who was first elected to the House in 1964, stepped down last month as the senior Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee.

(Reporting by Susan Heavey; Writing by Eric Beech; Editing by Alison Williams and Andrew Heavens)

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