• Kyodo


The government said Saturday it will bestow honors at its annual fall event on 4,079 citizens and 135 foreign nationals for their achievements in various fields, including music, politics and business.

Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, former U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney and former U.S. Secretary of Defense William Cohen will be among the foreign recipients from 58 countries and regions who are being recognized for their achievements .

Mahathir, 93, who promoted his “Look East” policy of learning from Japan’s work ethic while in office between 1981 and 2003, will receive the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Paulownia Flowers, the highest decoration that will be awarded. He returned to his former office this year.

Cheney, 77, and Cohen, 78, will join other former senior U.S. officials who have been honored by Japan for their roles in enhancing the security alliance between the two countries. Both will be conferred the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Rising Sun.

Among Japanese recipients, Takashi Imai, former president of what is now part of Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corp., and Juro Saito, a former president of the House of Councilors, will receive the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Paulownia Flowers.

Imai, 88, also headed the nation’s most powerful business lobby, Keidanren.

Saito, 78, presided over the Upper House for five years from 1995.

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