Yosuke Matsuoka (1880-1946) was the Foreign Minister of the Empire of Japan from 1940 to 1941.
Matsuoka went to the United States at the age of 13, and graduated from Oregon State University. After returning to Japan Matsuoka became a diplomat and served in China, Russia, the United States, and other countries.
In 1921, Matsuoka became Director of the Manchuria Railway and was appointed Vice-chairman in 1927. In 1930, he was elected to the Japanese House of Representatives.
He was appointed Japan's chief delegate plenipotentiary to the League of Nations. In 1933 Matsuoka walked out of talks on the resolution relating to Manchuria, and Japan soon withdrew from the League.
Matsuoka became President of the Manchuria Railway in 1935.
After the war, he was classified as a class-A war criminal, but he died from illness before his sentencing.
- Address by Foreign Minister of Japan, Yosuke Matsuoka, delivered before the 76th Session of the Imperial Diet, Tokyo, Japan, January 21, 1941.
- Statement of Yosuke Matsuoka, Japanese Foreign Minister, upon his return to Tokyo from Europe, April 22, 1941.
- The Jews of Japan, Daniel Ari Kapner and Stephen Levine, Jerusalem Letter No. 425 24 Adar I 5760 / 1 March 2000.