Japan PM Abe heads to hospital for check-up, sources say

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe entered a medical check-up hospital on Monday, a government source said after a top official expressed concern the prime minister suffered from tiredness due to his workload during the coronavirus pandemic. Abe, Japan’s longest serving prime minister, expects to return home later Monday after the Keio University Hospital exam in Tokyo, the source familiar with the situation told Reuters.

The reason for the inspection wasn’t immediately clear. Kyodo News said it was a routine check-up, citing people close to the prime minister, while Nippon TV cited government sources as saying it was not a worrying situation. Abe conducts a routine check-up twice a year, with his most recent on 13 June, Kyodo said, adding that Monday ‘s visit was a follow-up to the June check-up, citing a source hospital.

In recent weeks, Abe has discharged daily duties and was last seen in public on Saturday, at a Tokyo ceremony commemorating Japan’s World War Two defeat. Although there are no reports that he is unable to fulfill his duties, Deputy Prime Minister Taro Aso, who doubles as Finance Minister, would take over if that were the case.