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Andanar laments Abe’s resignation

Communications Secretary Martin Andanar is saddened by the resignation of Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzo, noting the Philippines’ good relationship with Japan under his leadership.

Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar (PCOO / FILE PHOTO / MANILA BULLETIN)

Abe announced his decision to vacate his post Friday, due to health reasons.

In a statement, Andanar said, “We are saddened by recent news that Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, a close friend of President Rodrigo Duterte, has decided to resign from his post due to his health issues. We would like to extend our prayers and support to Prime Minister Abe and his family for his speedy recovery.”

According to Andanar, the country saw “robust furtherance of the holistic relations” with Japan under Abe’s tenure.

“With that, Japan has continued to maintain itself as an important and trusted ally of the Philippines not only in our mutual socio-economic prosperity, but also towards the promotion of a free, open, and rules-based Indo-Pacific region,” he said.

He also noted that under Abe’s rule, Japan’s support to the Philippines has been truly apparent, particularly in its assistance to the Duterte administration’s campaigns on poverty alleviation, peace and security, infrastructure, and, more recently, the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Japan has never wavered in providing aid to our country despite the fact that it has also weathered challenges such as a devastating earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear accident in 2011,” he said.

The former journo, meanwhile, hoped that the Philippines and Japan will continue to enjoy good relations even with Abe’s resignation.

“We remain optimistic that our relations with Japan will continue to flourish and deepen, even though Prime Minister Abe has decided to vacate his post,” Andanar said.

Abe, who became Japan’s prime minister from 2006 to 2007 and 2012 to 2020, was often referred to by President Duterte as a “brother.” Duterte even invited Abe to his home in Davao City in January 2017.

President Duterte has visited Japan four times since he became president in 2016. He went to Tokyo twice last year. His first visit was from May 29 to 31 for Nikkei’s International Conference on the Future and a bilateral meeting with Abe. The second visit was from October 21 to 22 for the enthronement of Emperor Akihito.

Source: Manila Bulletin (

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