Abe Shinzo a leading figure in Japanese politics

Abe Shinzo has twice served as Japan's prime minister, and his family's political history stretches back decades. His grandfather, Kishi Nobusuke, served as prime minister between 1957 and 1960. And Abe's father served as foreign minister.

In 1993, Abe ran in a general election following his father's death.

He has since become a leading figure in Japanese politics. As deputy chief cabinet secretary, he visited North Korea with Japan's then-prime minister.

Abe first became leader in 2006 at the age of 52, making him Japan's youngest post-war prime minister. About a year later, the Liberal Democratic Party lost an Upper House election, and Abe resigned due to worsening health.

His condition improved over time. Abe then led the LDP to a landslide victory in the 2012 Lower House election and became prime minster once again.

He became known for his "Abenomics" policy aimed at revitalizing the country's economy. And he was a shrewd operator on the diplomatic front.

Abe led his party to a series of election victories and became Japan's longest-serving prime minister.

He stepped down again in 2020 due to health issues, but has remained an influential figure within the LDP.