Japan’s Former PM Assassinated At A Public Event (Photos)

Shinzo Abe, the former state head of Japan, has passed on Friday July 8, after being shot. Abe was attacked while delivering a speech in the city of Nara, close to Kyoto.
The episode has sent shock waves through Japan, a nation where weapon savagery is very uncommon.

The 67-year-old, who is the nation’s longest-serving state head (PM), was killed while campaigning for the ruling Liberal Democratic Party in the city of Nara, close to Kyoto.

Gun shots were heard at around 11.30 a.m. local time, and Abe was taken to Nara Medical University Hospital’s emergency center.

A man, believed to have shot former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, is tackled by police officers in Nara, western Japan July 8, 2022.

“When he was brought to the hospital he was in a state of cardiopulmonary arrest,” Dr. Hidetada Fukushima, who operated on Abe, said at a news conference. “They tried to resuscitate him but at 17:03 he was pronounced dead.”

“He had gun wounds in two locations and died of heart failure from heavily damaged arteries,” the doctor said.

According to reports, one person has been arrested in relation to the shooting.

Abe was not lobbying for a parliamentary seat himself, but rather was supporting the LDP ahead of elections for the country’s upper place of parliament Sunday. It isn’t evident whether the elections will go on according to plan.

Current Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said the attack was “a despicable and barbaric act that took place in the midst of an election, which is the foundation of democracy,” adding that it was still being investigated.

The incident has sent shock waves through Japan, a country where gun violence is extremely rare. Gun rules are very strict in the country; handguns are banned and anyone who wants to own an air rifle or shotgun must undergo extensive training and checks.

Abe resigned as prime minister in August 2020, after serving two terms, due to his worsening health.

The former prime minister was known for his efforts to revive Japan’s economic growth through a range of stimulus policies which became known as “Abenomics.” The aim was to boost productivity, reform Japan’s corporate culture and bring down the country’s debt over the long term, although analysts have said it has had mixed results for the world’s third-largest economy.

Meanwhile, U.S. President Joe Biden said he was “stunned, outraged, and deeply saddened” to learn of Abe’s death. “This is a tragedy for Japan and for all who knew him,” Biden said in a statement.

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Former U.S. President Barack Obama said he was shocked and saddened by the news of the death of his “friend and longtime partner.”

“I will always remember the work we did to strengthen our alliance, the moving experience of traveling to Hiroshima and Pearl Harbor together, and the grace he and his wife Akie Abe showed to me and Michelle,” he said in a statement,” he said in a statement.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi called Abe a “towering global statesman, an outstanding leader, and a remarkable administrator,” in a tweet.

In a subsequent post, Modi said Abe “made an immense contribution to elevating India-Japan relations.” The Indian leader said the country would hold a day of national mourning on July 9.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen called Abe a “wonderful person, great democrat and champion of the multilateral world order.”

Abe has been widely credited with boosting Japan’s presence on the world stage.

He maintained relations with former U.S. President Donald Trump and even negotiated an initial trade agreement in 2019.

In 2016, he hosted Barack Obama, who was U.S. president at the time, at Hiroshima. Obama became the first U.S. president to visit there since the atomic bombings by America in 1945.

In October 2018, Abe met with Chinese President Xi Jinping, becoming the first Japanese prime minister to visit Beijing since 2011. For several decades, Japan and China have had tense and fragile relations.

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