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Sep 15, 2020
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Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga. Dossier

Japan's new prime minister will be Yoshihide Suga... The confirmation of his candidacy will take place at an extraordinary session in parliament on Wednesday, September 16. The politician will replace in this post Shinzo Abewho was unable to complete his term for health reasons.

Yoshihide Suga.
Yoshihide Suga. Photo: Reuters

Yoshihide Suga will lead the government until the next general election in September 2021. Previously, he worked as a Cabinet Secretary. During the parliamentary vote, Suga received 377 out of 534 votes. He was also voted for by 89 of 141 party members from 47 Japanese prefectures. The post of prime minister was also claimed by Fumio Kishidawho served as foreign minister under Shinzo Abe and chaired the Policy Research Council for the past three years, and Shigeru Ishiba, General Secretary of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), formerly Minister of Defense.

As stated by Suga, he will continue the political course of his predecessor. He called the fight against the coronavirus and the recovery of the economy affected by the pandemic the main priorities. Also, the new Japanese prime minister does not intend to change the course of concluding a peace treaty with Russia following the results of World War II, which has not yet been signed due to a dispute over the islands of Kunashir, Iturup, Shikotan and Habomai.

Biography

Yoshihide Suga was born into a peasant family on December 6, 1948, in the village of Ogachi, Akita Prefecture. His father was a railroad worker in occupied Manchuria, and his mother was a teacher. After the defeat of Tokyo in World War II, my father fled China and started growing strawberries in northern Japan. The head of the family managed to become the head of the cooperative and even a local municipal deputy.

Suga earned his bachelor's degree from Hosei University in Tokyo. He chose this capital university because of the lowest tuition fees. The young man earned money for his education in a cardboard box factory and in a diner. Distributing newspapers was also part of his earnings. And after university with a diploma in political science, he got a job in a private company.

Almost immediately after graduation, Yoshihide Suga took up political activities. Having met members of the ruling party, he worked for eleven years as an assistant to a parliamentarian, then in 1984 he moved to the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Industry.

In 1987, Suga was elected to the legislature of Yokohama, Japan's second most populous city, and even earned the respectful nickname of the "shadow mayor of Yokohama."

In 1996, Yoshihide Suga was elected to the Japanese parliament on the list of the Liberal Democratic Party. He was originally a member of the faction Keizo Shoes, but withdrew after refusing to support Obuchi's candidacy in the 1998 party leader election.

From September 2006 to August 2007, Suga served as Minister of Internal Affairs and Communications in the first cabinet of Shinzo Abe.

Since December 26, 2012, he has been the General Secretary of the Cabinet of Ministers of Japan. For eight years in this post, Yoshihide Suga completely took control of the party apparatus, became the key coordinator of the government's activities. As secretary general of the cabinet, he spoke twice a day at briefings on Japanese politics. He also had the honor to announce the name of the era of reign of the new emperor of Japan Naruhito - Reiwa, which means "beautiful harmony". Since then, the nickname "Uncle Rave" has been firmly established for the politician.

On September 14, 2020, Yoshihide Suga was elected to the post of chairman of the Liberal Democratic Party of Japan and automatically became the country's prime minister.

Suga plays sports and leads a healthy lifestyle. On weekdays, he wakes up at five in the morning, does 100 squats and ab exercises every day. He walks to work, eats vegetables, fruits and yogurt for breakfast.

Yoshihide Suga is married. He has three sons. Earlier, Japanese feminists accused the politician of sexism, and representatives of the left camp - of following the path of the Japanese militarists, who urged women to give birth to more future soldiers. In response to criticism, Suga said that everyone is free to decide for himself whether he needs to get married or have children, but the government should work to create a society in which people would be comfortable to marry and raise children.

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