People watch a TV screen showing a live broadcast of Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's speech, at the Seoul Railway Station in Seoul, South Korea, Aug 28, 2020. (AHN YOUNG-JOON / AP)
SEOUL./LONDON/MOSCOW - South Korea's presidential Blue House on Friday expressed regret at Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's abrupt announcement of resignation due to poor health.
Blue House spokesman Kang Min-seok said in a statement that the South Korean government feels regrettable for Prime Minister Abe to abruptly announce his resignation.
A spokesman for the Blue House said in a statement that Abe, who left behind meaningful achievements as Japan's longest-serving prime minister, had played many roles in developing the South Korea-Japan relations for long
The spokesman said in the statement that Abe, who left behind meaningful achievements as Japan's longest-serving prime minister, had played many roles in developing the South Korea-Japan relations for long.
The spokesman said South Korea hoped that Abe would recover soon, vowing to continue cooperation with a new Japanese prime minister, who will be elected, and Japan's new cabinet to enhance the friendly, cooperative relations between Seoul and Tokyo.
Besides South Korea, other international leaders and businesspeople have also responded following Abe's announcement.
Australian PM Scott Morrison
“Prime Minister Abe is a man of integrity and wisdom. He has been the senior statesman in our region and across the globe, a strong promoter of open trade and an outstanding international diplomat for Japan. He has advocated for the region’s prosperity and stability, bringing his leadership as an experienced statesman of the first order.
“Prime Minister Abe steps down as a regional leader having made unprecedented contributions, particularly as we respond to the health and economic impacts of COVID-19.”
UK PM Boris Johnson
"@AbeShinzo has achieved great things as PM of Japan - for his country and the world," British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Twitter.
"Under his stewardship the UK-Japan relationship has gone from strength to strength in trade, defense and our cultural links. Thank you for all your years of service and I wish you good health."
The Kremlin regrets that Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has decided to step down, spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Friday, describing the working relations between Abe and President Vladimir Putin as 'brilliant'.
Marcus Schurmann, CEO, German Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Japan
“He did a lot of good with regards just to the fact that he was one of the key promoters for multilateralism and free trade and did a lot to move to Japan back onto the world stage. Japan recovered the visibility and recognition the third-largest economy in the world deserves.
“We have FTAs and he also tackled a lot of difficult problems. Just thinking about relations with China, relations also with Russia, and also the difficult relationship with the US at least since Trump came into power.
“I do not want to say he failed, but at least what is an unsolved problem is the relationship with Korea. I think that’s the kind of problem which his successor has to work on.
“He succeeded in bringing the Olympics to Tokyo. I think this is also a major achievement we should not forget.”
HONG KONG NEWS