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Kishida eyes cabinet reshuffle as early as Wednesday: sources

Japanese leader originally planned changes in first half of September

Japan's Prime Minister Fumio Kishida delivers a speech at his official residence in Tokyo on July 14.   © Reuters

TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Prime Minister Fumio Kishida is considering reshuffling his cabinet lineup as early as Wednesday, government sources said.

The premier was originally planning to make the changes in the first half of September but has since leaned toward bringing things forward before the extraordinary parliamentary session slated for the fall, the sources said Friday.

Kishida's Liberal Democratic Party had a strong showing in the House of Councillors election on July 10, putting him in a position to oversee a three-year period of stability in which no national elections will be held unless he dissolves the House of Representatives, the more powerful lower chamber of parliament.

During the period, the prime minister plans to promote urgent issues, like the fight against inflation, while seeking to push forward efforts toward revising Japan's U.S.-drafted pacifist Constitution.

With the approach of key events, including the state funeral of former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe scheduled on Sept. 27, and the parliamentary session eyed for October, Kishida likely thought new cabinet members need time to prepare for parliamentary debates.

The reshuffle would come after Kishida attends ceremonies marking the 1945 atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki on Saturday and Tuesday, respectively.

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