The newly minted U.S. leader is looking to reassure a world wary of capricious American foreign policy during the Trump administration.
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The nation is preparing to vaccinate, starting with medical workers and older people, based on hopes that Pfizer's vaccine will be approved here by mid-February.
In a speech to kick off the new Diet session, Suga asked the public to trust his ability to modernize the nation and steer Japan through the COVID-19 storm.
The prime minister will seek to pass key COVID-19 measures as he faces flak from opposition parties over his response to the deadly virus.
The government will temporarily suspend the arrangement with 11 Asian countries and regions from Thursday, effectively banning the entry of all nonresident foreign travelers.
The restrictions will enter into force Friday and remain in place until at least Feb. 7, only being lifted when the areas see a significant reduction in key benchmarks.
Entering a high-stakes election year, the prime minister will be faced with a series of uphill battles over the global health crisis, his policies — and his own political fate.
Tokyo will be particularly interested to see how the next U.S. president tackles China, trade, regional security as well as its relationships with Southeast Asia and the two Koreas.
The long-running scandal has tainted the legacy of Abe's administration, corroded his credibility and cast a shadow over his successor.
The government said it will temporarily ban most arrivals from the U.K., though Japanese nationals and foreign nationals with valid residence permits will be exempt.