Top Asian News 1:52 a.m. GMT

Women gradually rise in Japanese politics but face deep challenges

TOKYO (AP) — Eight years ago, Yuriko Koike became the first woman to lead Tokyo, beating her male predecessor. She won her third term as governor Sunday, and one of her closest rivals was a woman. Multiple women competing for a top political office is still rare in Japan, which has a terrible global gender-equality ranking, but Koike’s win highlights a gradual rise in powerful female officials and a society more open to gender balance in politics. That said, even if a woman eventually becomes prime minister, politics here is still overwhelmingly dominated by men, and experts see a huge effort needed for equal representation.