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Kato, Komei (Takaaki)

Komei (Takaaki) Kato (kō´mā kä´tō, täkä-ä´kē), 1860–1926, Japanese statesman. He entered the foreign ministry after graduating from Tokyo Univ. He served (1909) as ambassador to Great Britain. He was foreign minister (1914–15), but his presentation of the Twenty-one Demands to China forced his resignation. Later he organized and headed the conservative Kenseikai party. During his term (1924–25) as prime minister his cabinet was called "the Mitsubishi government," because he and his foreign minister, Shidehara, were both connected by marriage with the Mitsubishi interests. His administration reduced army strength and government expenditures, initiated universal military training, increased military instruction on all educational levels, sponsored the manhood-suffrage law, and favored the Peace Preservation Law, penalizing political heterodoxy.

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