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Worldcrunch

Japan's Seventh Prime Minister In Six Years Unveils New Cabinet

THE JAPAN TIMES, THE ASAHI SHIMBUN, (Japan) THE NEW YORK TIMES (USA), BBC NEWS (UK)

TOKYO - Japan’s new Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has unveiled his Cabinet lineup, as he begins the task of resuscitating the country’s economy.

Parliament voted Shinzo Abe back to power after Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda resigned Wednesday, ending the country’s three-year break from decades of near-constant rule by the conservative Liberal Democratic Party (LDP).

Japan's new Prime Minister Shinzo Abe - Photo: TTTNIS

Abe, who led the LDP to a landslide victory in this month's general election, has formed a new Cabinet that includes several of his close associates, most of whom are economic policy veterans, according to Japan’s Asahi Shimbun.

It is Japan’s seventh change in prime ministers in six years – a sign of Japan’s inability to face its economic difficulties, its industrial decline but also the challenge of an increasingly assertive China, according to The New York Times.

The Japan Times depicts Abe as a hawkish, right-of-centre leader. His previous term in office ended ignominiously amid falling popularity and a resignation on grounds of ill health, BBC News recalls.

An outspoken nationalist, Abe, 58, has vowed to defend Japan’s control of the Senkaku islands in the East China Sea – islands that are also claimed by China – although The Asahi Shimbun reports that Abe has backed off his call to permanently base civil servants on the islands.


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