China hand Yokoi to become ambassador to China


The government will appoint Yutaka Yokoi, Japan’s representative in Turkey, as the next ambassador to China, sources familiar with the matter said Sunday. The appointment may take place in May.

Yokoi, 61, is a so-called China-school diplomat who underwent foreign language training in China. It will be the first time since 2010 that a China-school diplomat has been named ambassador to China, they said.

Japan’s current ambassador in Beijing, Masato Kitera, 63, is expected to be offered the top job at the Embassy in Paris, the sources said. Kitera specializes in France.

Yokoi joined the ministry in 1979. He became ambassador to Turkey in August 2013. He has served in previously at the Embassy in Beijing, and has also been the consul general in Shanghai.