Japan has named a new Foreign Minister, Takeaki Matsumoto, at a challenging time for ties with China and Russia.
The 51-year-old former banker has been the vice foreign minister in Prime Minister Naoto Kan's government, which is struggling to survive.
The country's new leading diplomat comes from an illustrious family - he is a great great grandson of Japan's first prime minister.
Mr Matsumoto replaces Seiji Maehara who resigned due to a donations scandal.
Mr Kan's spokesman, Yukio Edano, said Mr Matsumoto had been chosen for his "capability, knowledge and to ensure continuity of diplomacy".
Japan has in recent days protested against a Chinese overflight of a Japanese ship in the disputed East China Seas.
It was the latest in a series of diplomatic battles over maritime territory, reflecting growing tension over the region's realignment of roles as China's economy and armed forces grow.
Japan is also in a territorial dispute with Russia over the south Kuril Islands.
The resignation of the previous foreign minister, Mr Maehara, was seen as a blow to Prime Minister Kan, who has been struggling to get budget bills through parliament and hold on to his own job.