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Japan's Takaichi 'really wants to meet' Taiwan president if elected PM

If elected president of Liberal Democratic Party, Takaichi will become Japan's first female prime minister

Takaichi Sanae.

Takaichi Sanae. (AP photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) —Takaichi Sanae, one of the three candidates running for president of Japan’s dominant Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), praised Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) in an interview on Tuesday (Sept. 14) and said she would like to meet her.

The LDP presidential election will be announced Friday (Sept. 17), while voting will be held on Sept. 29, CNA reported. Currently, three LDP members have announced their intentions to run for office, including former Policy Research Council Chair Kishida Fumio; Takaichi, who was endorsed by former Prime Minister Abe Shinzo; and Minister for Administrative Reform Kono Taro.

In an interview with the Sankei Shimbun, Takaichi said, “(Tsai) is a determined woman, and I look up to her. I would very much like to meet her.” According to the daily newspaper, this implies that she intends to do so after taking office if she is elected.

CNA reported that Takaichi once said she aspires to be a female leader like former U.K. Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. “Though her policies were not welcomed by citizens, she adhered to her beliefs and worked hard to convince her people. This is my ideal attitude, I like it very much,” she was quoted as saying.

Takaichi also said that Japan should promote partnership with Taiwan with resolve, reported Sankei Shimbun. According to CNA, she said that if anything happens to Taiwan, it is a threat to Japan, and therefore very likely that it will be an incident that calls for “self-defense.”

However, she also told the Sankei Shimbun that as it is impossible for the Taiwanese government to be run by the same administration forever, if a pro-China administration takes over in Taiwan, Japan must be prepared to handle the risk of technology being leaked to China.

Updated : 2021-10-23 21:59 GMT+08:00