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The Latest Abe praises Nakasone for raising Japan’s profile

TOKYO — The Latest on the death of Japan’s former Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone (all times local):

4:15 p.m.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has expressed deep sorrow over the death of former Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone and praised him for raising the country’s profile by contributing to global peace and economic order.

Nakasone, a giant of Japanese post-World War II politics, died Friday at age 101.

Abe said Nakasone served at a time when Japan faced severe domestic and diplomatic challenges, including Cold War tensions and trade friction with the United States.

He praised Nakasone for improving relations with other Asian countries while strengthening the Japan-U.S. alliance through his personal friendship with former U.S. President Ronald Reagan.


1:15 p.m.

Former Japanese Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone, a giant of his country’s post-World War II politics, has died. He was 101.

The office of his son, Hirofumi Nakasone, confirmed that Nakasone died Friday at a Tokyo hospital, where he was recently treated.

As prime minister from 1982 to 1987, he was a stalwart ally of America known for his warm relations with President Ronald Reagan.

Nakasone boosted defense spending, tried to revise Japan’s U.S.-drafted pacifist constitution and was remembered for his unabashed appeals to patriotism that drew criticism.

A World War II naval officer, Nakasone had witnessed the depth of Japan’s defeat and devastation. Four decades later, he presided over Japan at the pinnacle of its economic success.

He became one of Japan’s leading elder statesmen in his later years. He promoted his ruling party’s longtime goal of revising the constitution and pronounced his views on national and international affairs.

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