Chief Correspondent, Political and General News
Linda's Feed
Jan 20, 2014

Japan’s Abe suffers setback with Okinawa election loss

TOKYO (Reuters) – A city mayor opposed to a plan to relocate a controversial U.S. airbase on Japan’s Okinawa island was re-elected on Sunday, creating a political headache for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and threatening friction with Washington.

Delays in relocating the U.S. Marines’ Futenma air base, a move first agreed between Tokyo and Washington in 1996, have long been an irritant in U.S.-Japan ties and Abe is keen to make progress on the project as he seeks tighter ties with the United States in the face of an assertive China.

Jan 14, 2014

Japan’s Koizumi backs fellow ex-PM in opposing nuclear power

TOKYO, Jan 14 (Reuters) – Two former Japanese prime
ministers challenged incumbent Shinzo Abe’s pro-nuclear power
policy on Tuesday, with charismatic Junichiro Koizumi backing
ex-premier Morihiro Hosokawa’s bid to become Tokyo governor on a
platform opposing atomic energy.

Hosokawa’s candidacy could turn the local election into a
referendum on Abe’s energy policies and boost the anti-nuclear
movement, which has lost momentum after a surge following the
March 2011 Fukushima disaster, the world’s worst nuclear
accident in 25 years.

Jan 14, 2014

Japan’s charismatic Koizumi backs fellow ex-PM in targeting Abe’s nuclear policy

TOKYO, Jan 14 (Reuters) – Two former Japanese prime
ministers challenged incumbent Shinzo Abe’s pro-nuclear power
policy on Tuesday, with charismatic Junichiro Koizumi backing
ex-premier Morihiro Hosokawa’s bid to become Tokyo governor on a
platform opposing atomic energy.

Hosokawa’s candidacy could turn the local election into a
referendum on Abe’s energy policies and boost the anti-nuclear
movement, which has lost momentum after a surge following the
March 2011 Fukushima disaster, the world’s worst nuclear
accident in 25 years.

Dec 27, 2013

Japan’s Abe bets U.S. alliance, ratings can weather shrine visit

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s visit to a shrine for war dead outraged China and South Korea, and also upset Washington and his government coalition partner – but he appears confident the alliances and his popularity will not be affected.

On Thursday, Abe became the first Japanese premier in seven years to pay his respects at Yasukuni Shrine, where Japanese leaders convicted as war criminals by an Allied tribunal after World War Two are honoured along with those who died in battle.

Dec 27, 2013

Analysis: Japan’s Abe bets U.S. alliance, ratings can weather shrine visit

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s visit to a shrine for war dead outraged China and South Korea, and also upset Washington and his government coalition partner – but he appears confident the alliances and his popularity will not be affected.

On Thursday, Abe became the first Japanese premier in seven years to pay his respects at Yasukuni Shrine, where Japanese leaders convicted as war criminals by an Allied tribunal after World War Two are honored along with those who died in battle.

Dec 26, 2013

Japanese PM Abe visits shrine for war dead, China angered

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited Tokyo’s Yasukuni Shrine for war dead on Thursday, a temple seen as a symbol of Japan’s World War Two militarism, prompting a swift and sharp rebuke from China.

The first serving prime minister to visit the shrine in seven years, Abe however said he had no intention of hurting the sentiments of Japan’s neighbors.

Dec 26, 2013

Japan PM Abe visits Yasukuni Shrine for war dead

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited Tokyo’s controversial Yasukuni Shrine for war dead on Thursday, a move likely to anger Asian neighbors China and South Korea.

Tokyo’s relations with Beijing and Seoul are already strained by territorial rows and disputes stemming from Japan’s wartime occupation of large parts of China and its 1910-1945 colonization of the Korean peninsula.

Dec 17, 2013

Japan to bolster military, boost Asia ties to counter China

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan will boost its military spending in coming years, buying early-warning planes, beach-assault vehicles and troop-carrying aircraft, while seeking closer ties with Asian partners to counter a more militarily assertive China.

The planned 2.6 percent increase over five years, announced on Tuesday, reverses a decade of decline and marks the clearest sign since Prime Minister Shinzo Abe took office a year ago that he wants a bigger military role for Japan as tension flares with Asia’s other big power over islands both claim.

Dec 15, 2013

Japan PM to push security agenda next year with fresh urgency

TOKYO (Reuters) – Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will likely push with fresh urgency next year a bid to ease legal limits on the Japanese military’s ability to fight shoulder to shoulder with allies overseas, a goal that eluded him in his first troubled term.

Lifting Japan’s self-imposed ban on exercising the right of collective self-defence would mark a major turning point for Japan’s post-war security policy and could increase tensions in the region, where a row over tiny uninhabited islands in the East China Sea encapsulates growing Sino-Japanese mistrust.

Dec 15, 2013

Analysis: Japan PM to push security agenda next year with fresh urgency

TOKYO (Reuters) – Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will likely push with fresh urgency next year a bid to ease legal limits on the Japanese military’s ability to fight shoulder to shoulder with allies overseas, a goal that eluded him in his first troubled term.

Lifting Japan’s self-imposed ban on exercising the right of collective self-defense would mark a major turning point for Japan’s post-war security policy and could increase tensions in the region, where a row over tiny uninhabited islands in the East China Sea encapsulates growing Sino-Japanese mistrust.

    • About Linda

      "I direct a team of reporters responsible for covering politics, diplomacy, social and security policies in the world's second-biggest economy, as well as natural disasters, entertainment and lifestyle trends. I have been in my current position since April 1999 and prior to that was Chief Economics Correspondent, Japan."
    • Follow Linda