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Toshiyuki Takano, deputy foreign minister for political affairs, will be the next ambassador to South Korea, according to government sources.

Takano, 58, is expected to succeed Terusuke Terada around the middle of next month, after the current Diet session is over, the sources said.

Hitoshi Tanaka, director general of the Foreign Ministry’s Asian and Oceanian Affairs Bureau, is expected to succeed Takano as deputy foreign minister for political affairs.

The Foreign Ministry had intended to nominate Takano as ambassador to Seoul during a series of personnel moves in September.

The appointment, however, was temporarily shelved when the ministry kept Tanaka at his post as head of Asian affairs to oversee arrangements for Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi’s Sept. 17 summit in North Korea and subsequent Japan-North Korea talks.

Takano joined the Foreign Ministry in 1967. He has served as deputy foreign minister for political affairs since August 2001. He was also ambassador to Singapore.

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