Ashida, Hitoshi, 1887–1959, Japanese politician. He studied law at Tokyo Imperial Univ. and worked in the ministry of foreign affairs before being elected to the Diet in 1932 as a member of the Seiyukai party. After the war, he was elected to the new Diet as a member of the Liberal party, which eventually merged with other parties to become the Liberal Democratic party . Ashida was appointed foreign minister in 1947 under Tetsu Katayama . As prime minister (Mar.–Oct., 1948) he led a coalition government that fell due to a bribery scandal; he later (1958) was cleared of all charges.
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