Japan’s parliament today appointed Yoshihide Suga as new prime minister to replace Shinzo Abe, who resigned on health grounds after almost eight years as the government’s leader.
Suga, 71, who was chief of staff and spokesman for the Abe government, obtained 314 out of 462 votes, in an extraordinary session of the Japanese parliament (Diet), convened to ratify the choice, following the party’s proposal in the with a parliamentary majority.
On Monday, the Liberal Democratic Party (PLD) chooses Suga as a new leader, to complete the mandate that Abe also did not fulfill, until September next year.
Before parliamentary confirmation, Shinzo Abe, the Japanese prime minister who held the longest office, and Government members submitted the resignation.
Suga has been a loyal supporter of Abe since his first stint as prime minister, from 2006 to 2007. Abe’s term then ended abruptly because of an illness and Suga qualified him to return as prime minister in 2012 .
Abe, 65, who suffers from ulcerative colitis, explained last month that he was forced to resign, as he faced continuous treatment with obvious physical impact, despite feeling better.
The new prime minister will inherit a number of challenges, including diplomatic and economic relations with China and the United States, as well as what to do with the Tokyo Olympics, postponed until next summer due to the pandemic.
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