Obuchi, Keizo

Obuchi, Keizo

(kā`zō ōbo͞o`chē), 1937–2000, Japanese politician, prime minister of Japan (1998–2000), b. Nakanojo. The son of a silk manufacturer and politician, Obuchi graduated from Waseda Univ. in 1962 and in 1963 was elected to the parliament seat once held by his late father. A member of the Liberal Democratic partyLiberal Democratic party
(LDP), Japanese political party. It began as the conservative Liberal party, which, under Shigeru Yoshida, became the dominant political force in Japan following World War II. In 1955 the Liberals merged with the newly created Democratic party.
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 (LDP), Obuchi rose within it to become leader of the largest party faction by 1992. In 1997 he became foreign minister in Prime Minister Ryutaro HashimotoHashimoto, Ryutaro
, 1937–2006, Japanese politician, b. Tokyo, grad. Keio Univ. He entered politics in 1963, when he was elected to parliament from Okayama prefecture.
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's government, and he succeeded Hashimoto as prime minister after the LDP suffered electoral losses in 1998. Known for his quiet, self-effacing style, Obuchi was able to help stabilize Japan's faltering economy and calm its divisive political wrangling. In Apr., 2000, after being incapacitated by a stroke, Obuchi was replaced as prime minister by Yoshiro MoriMori, Yoshiri,
1937–, Japanese politician, prime minister of Japan (2000–2001), b. Neagari. Born into a political family in rural Ishikawa prefecture and educated at Waseda Univ., he was a newspaper reporter before his first election to the Diet in 1969.
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.
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