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Shinzo Abe resigns without landmarks achieved



No territorial disputes solved



28.Aug.20 2:46 PM
By Shawn Highstraw
Photo Reuters

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Shinzo Abe resigns without landmarks achieved
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has announced his resignation. At a press conference, he said he's not serving his term for health reasons.

Abe has been suffering from chronic bowel inflammation since his teens. On Tuesday he had to go to the hospital for the second time in a short time.

"My health has been deteriorating since June," Abe said. "I don't want the disease to lead to wrong policy choices." Abe thanked the Japanese people for their confidence in him and apologized for not being able to complete his term.

The Conservative prime minister will probably remain in office until his Liberal-Democratic Party has chosen a successor. Abe didn't want to speculate on who should follow him.

His term of office will expire in September next year. Abe, 65 years old, has been Prime Minister of Japan since 2012 and the country's longest-serving prime minister. In 2006 he also became prime minister, but then he stopped after a year, also for health reasons.

Little of the support for the once popular Japanese Prime Minister is left. Abe's popularity has collapsed recently. People are particularly dissatisfied with his response to the COVID-19. Abe was virtually invisible in the great second SARSv2 wave we've had in Japan over the past few months.

The prime minister was also criticized for his economic policy. Abe had a very aggressive monetary policy, which was a success, but little has come of his economic reforms. He said repeatedly that he wanted to give women a bigger role, but that did not work.

It was Abe's great dream to remove pacifism from the Japanese Constitution, but there was enormous opposition to it, including within his own party. By adapting, Japan could, for example, deploy the army if an ally is attacked.

Abe's succession becomes a power struggle within the party. In recent weeks, rumours have also increased that there is a chance of early elections. With that in mind, two large opposition parties have recently merged. It's hard to predict who's going to be the new prime minister.



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