I’m leaving without finishing my business, and it breaks my heart.”
Japanese President Shinzo Abe has resigned as prime minister. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced his resignation on Friday. As NHK previously reported, the politician was found to have serious health problems and in August he underwent several examinations. Now the ruling Liberal Democratic Party has to choose its new leader. However, in any case, according to Abe’s associates, his resignation will not affect Russian-Japanese relations.
Shinzo Abe told cabinet members at an extraordinary cabinet meeting that he would resign. Later, at a press conference, Abe confirmed that he had made such a decision. He said he could not perform his duties for health reasons. According to Shinzo Abe, during the eight years he was Japanese prime minister, “he managed to cope with the disease”, but “in June it was discovered that the disease has returned,” as confirmed in August in surveys. “When making political decisions during illness and treatment, mistakes can be made,” he explained his move and apologized to fellow citizens for having to resign early.
Shinzo Abe became the youngest Japanese prime minister in the country’s history in 2006. He took up this position at the age of 52. In 2007, Abe announced his resignation, citing health problems. In December 2012, the politician again headed the government. And this week he came out on top in the history of Japan in his continuous career as head of government.
Earlier, a source of Kyodo agency reported that the Prime Minister had worsening ulcerative colitis. Abe’s health became the focus of attention after it was reported that the politician was examined at a hospital in Tokyo on August 17 and 24. For the first time, in his own words, the visit lasted seven and a half hours. The Prime Minister himself has said that it is necessary to make sure that he is in good health. Japanese media also reported that the prime minister in July became ill in the office. According to the Japanese edition of Flash, he was vomiting with blood.
The resignation came amid mounting criticism of the current government by the opposition.
The reason, in particular, was the scandal with the Prosecutor of Tokyo Hiromu Kurokava and his friends – journalists of leading Japanese publications Sankei and Asahi. As it turned out, in May the Tokyo prosecutor and his friends were going to the apartment of the journalist Sankei to play for money in the banned gambling mahjong in Japan, thus violating the law and ethics.
Hiromu Kurokawa, who had applied to take up the post of the country’s attorney general, was forced to resign. To mitigate the scandal, Justice Minister Masako Mori also submitted her resignation. Against this background, the opposition demanded the resignation of Abe himself, whose rating, according to a poll by the newspaper Mainichi, after the scandal fell by a third – from 40% to 27%.
Summing up his tenure as prime minister, Shinzo Abe emphasized that he regrets leaving without signing a peace treaty with Russia.
“I am very sorry that we have not solved the problem of abducted (North Korea-“y”) citizens. The issue of the peace treaty, the issue of changing the constitution. I’m leaving without finishing these cases, and it breaks my heart,” he said.
Meanwhile, Senator Muneo Suzuki told RIA Novosti news agency on Friday that Abe’s resignation will not affect Russian-Japanese relations. “The strong relationship between Prime Minister Abe and Russian President Vladimir Putin will be inherited by the next prime minister,” he said.
“Russia for decades offered Japan a hand of friendship, offered to sign a peace treaty, but all Japanese prime ministers conditioned its signing put the return of the southern Kurils, which is impossible. We hope that whoever heads the Japanese government now, the new prime minister will treat Russia as a full partner with whom it is necessary to reach an agreement and not to the territory from which a piece can be seized,” Vladimir Jabarov, the first deputy chairman of the Federation Council’s International Affairs Committee