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Data: Gleditsc and Chiozza, 2016, "Archigos — A Data Set on Leaders 1875–2015", Axios research; Chart: Axios Visuals

Yoshihide Suga will represent Japan at this week's UN General Assembly just days after replacing the country's longest-serving prime minister, Shinzo Abe.

By the numbers: Suga, 71, may find Abe's longevity hard to match. Japan had 17 prime ministers in the 14 years before Abe took office.

  • By contrast, Angela Merkel will soon mark 15 years as Germany's chancellor.

Driving the news: Since Abe resigned due to chronic health issues, Suga has undergone "a rapid im­age makeover from a tough back­room en­forcer of the prime min­is­ter’s policies to a warmer ral­ly­ing fig­ure best equipped to con­tinue" the legacy of the man he served for nearly eight years as chief cabinet secretary, per WSJ.

  • His main offering, to his party and his country, has been continuity. Suga's new cabinet includes just two women but 11 Abe holdovers. One of the eight additions is Abe's brother, as defense minister.
  • While Abe was heir to one of Japan's most prominent political dynasties, Suga's parents were farmers.
  • He's considered shrewd and hard-working, but not particularly charismatic. It's unclear whether he'll play as visible a role on the world stage as his predecessor, who boasted strong personal relationships with leaders including President Trump.

What to expect: Suga's speech to the nearly all-virtual UN General Assembly was recorded over the weekend, per Nikkei, but won't be streamed until this Saturday.

  • He'll emphasize continuity with Abe's priorities of "freedom, democracy and the rule of law," stress the importance of collaboration on vaccine distribution, and call for international cooperation "to resolve the issue of Japanese citizens abducted by North Korea," Nikkei reports.
  • The speeches will begin Tuesday, with speakers including President Trump, China's Xi Jinping and Russia's Vladimir Putin.

Go deeper

Updated Nov 12, 2020 - Politics & Policy

More foreign leaders have called to congratulate Biden than GOP senators

Photo: Joe Raedle via Getty

Eight world leaders have now called to congratulate President-elect Joe Biden — four more than the number of GOP senators who have publicly done so.

Why it matters: The refusal by top Republicans to accept Biden's victory and allow legal options to be exhausted could mean weeks of drama and serve as a distraction from the work that is necessary to ensure a smooth transition of power.

Updated 9 hours ago - Politics & Policy

U.S. sounds alarm on Ukraine

Conscripts line up at a Russian railway station yesterday before departing for Army service. Photo: Sergei Malgavko/TASS via Getty Images

The Biden administration is "deeply concerned" by new intelligence — detailed for Axios and other outlets — showing Russia stepping up preparations to invade Ukraine as soon as early 2022.

Why it matters: Most of this was known from public sources and satellite imagery, but the administration is sending a stronger signal by releasing specific details from the intelligence community.

10 hours ago - Economy & Business

CNN fires Chris Cuomo

Photo: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for CNN

CNN said Saturday evening it has fired one of its star anchors, Chris Cuomo, following new revelations from a legal review made by the company into Cuomo's involvement in the management of his brother's sexual harassment scandal.

Why it matters: Saturday's firing speaks to how much pressure CNN was under by employees and critics to address Cuomo's behavior.