Japan taps ministers to freshen image, keep policies steady

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe enters his official residence in Tokyo Wednesday, Sept. 11, 2019. Abe will reshuffle his Cabinet in a move that's likely to impact key issues including tensions with South Korea.

TOKYO (AP) — Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has shuffled his Cabinet, adding two women and a son of a former leader to freshen his image while maintaining continuity on U.S.-oriented trade and security policies.

Abe, who has made cordial relations with President Donald Trump a pillar of his policies, kept the same faces in key positions in his ministers announced Wednesday.

Taro Kono, who was foreign minister, was appointed defense minister, while Toshimitsu Motegi, minister in charge of economic policy, is now foreign minister.

Finance Minister Taro Aso, a veteran politician, kept his job.

Women in the Cabinet tend to get attention in Japan, which is criticized as lagging in promoting females in jobs and politics.

Also getting attention is new environment minister Shinjiro Koizumi, son of former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi.

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