Shintaro Abe

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Shintaro Abe
Minister of Foreign Affairs
In office
Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone
Preceded by Yoshio Sakurauchi
Personal details
Born April 29, 1924
Yamaguchi prefecture
Died May 15, 1991(1991-05-15) (aged 67)
Political party Liberal Democratic Party
Alma mater Tokyo University

Shintaro Abe (安倍 晋太郎 Abe Shintarō?, April 29, 1924 – May 15, 1991)[1] was a Japanese politician from Yamaguchi Prefecture. He was a leading member of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP). He was Japan`s longest reigning postwar foreign minister.[2]

Early life and education[edit]

Abe was born in Yamaguchi prefecture[2] on April 29, 1924 and the eldest son of a pre-World War I politician and member of Parliament Kan Abe. His mother was an army general's daughter.[3] He was a graduate of Tokyo University's law department.[3]


Shintaro Abe began his career as a political reporter for Mainichi Shimbun.[4] He became a politician in 1957, when he started working as a legislative aide of the then-prime minister Nobusuke Kishi.[4] He won his father's seat in the House of Representatives in 1958.[3]

He led a major LDP faction, the conservative Seiwa Seisaku Kenkyūkai, whose reins took from former Prime Minister Takeo Fukuda in July 1986, and held a variety of ministerial and party posts. He held different ministerial posts, including minister of agriculture, forestry and fisheries, minister of international trade and industry.[3] Abe was named as minister of international trade and industry in the cabinet of the then prime minister Zenko Suzuki on November 30, 1981.[5] During this period, he was seen as young leader groomed for the future prime ministry.[5] In July 1982, he was appointed minister of foreign affairs in the cabinet of the then-prime minister Yasuhiro Nakasone, replacing Yoshio Sakurauchi. His term lasted until 1986.[2]

Abe was a top contender to succeed Nakasone as prime minister in 1987, until he stepped aside for Noboru Takeshita, head of a powerful rival faction. Then, he was given the post of general secretary of the party in 1987.[2] In 1988, his chances of becoming prime minister sometime in a near future were again thwarted when his name became associated with the Recruit-Cosmos insider-trading stock scandal, which brought down Takeshita and forced Abe to resign as the party's general secretary in December 1988.[2]

Personal life[edit]

Abe was son-in-law of Prime Minister Nobusuke Kishi. He was married to Yoko Kishi, daughter of Prime Minister Nobusuke Kishi in 1951.[2] His second son, Shinzō Abe, became Prime Minister of Japan on September 26, 2006 and on December 26, 2012.[6]


Abe was hospitalized in January 1991.[3] He died of heart failure at Tokyo's Juntendo University Hospital on May 15, 1991.[4]


  1. ^ "Abe, Shintaro". Who Was Who in America, with World Notables, v. 10: 1989-1993. New Providence, NJ: Marquis Who's Who. 1993. p. 1. ISBN 0837902207. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f Yates, Ronald E. (May 16, 1991). "Shintaro Abe, 67". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved January 1, 2013. 
  3. ^ a b c d e "Shintaro Abe; Ex-Japanese Foreign Minister". Los Angeles Times (Tokyo). May 16, 1991. Retrieved January 1, 2013. 
  4. ^ a b c "Shintaro Abe, Japanese Political Leader". The Seattle Times. May 15, 1991. Retrieved January 1, 2013. 
  5. ^ a b "Japan's cabinet shuffled". Spokane Daily Chronicle (Tokyo). UPI. November 30, 1981. Retrieved January 1, 2013. 
  6. ^ "Profile: Shinzo Abe". BBC. December 17, 2012. Retrieved January 1, 2013. 
Political offices
Preceded by
Yoshio Sakurauchi
Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan
Succeeded by
Tadashi Kuranari