Former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe Assassinated During Speech

Former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe Assassinated During Speech

Former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe died Friday after being shot while delivering a stump speech in the western city of Nara two days before a national election. He was 67.

Japan’s longest-serving leader was shot by a 41-year-old man from behind at around 11:30 a.m. when he was speaking in front of Kintetsu Railway’s Yamato-Saidaiji Station, police said, and he collapsed on the ground after at least two shots were fired. He was rushed to a hospital with blood seen on his shirt.

Abe, who was prime minister until 2020, was also wounded and bleeding on the right side of his neck with internal bleeding confirmed in the left side of his chest.

Shinzo collapsed at around 11:30 a.m. and was immediately transported to the hospital, where he went into cardiopulmonary arrest, NHK World-Japan reported. The hospital announced his death at around 5:00 a.m. (eastern time).

A doctor with the Nara Medical University Hospital said at a press conference that Abe died at 5:03 p.m. and the wound was deep enough to reach his heart, adding the cause of death is believed to be blood loss.

Tetsuya Yamagami, a resident of Nara in his 40s, was arrested at the scene on suspicion of attempted murder, the police said. The suspect was formerly a member of the Maritime Self-Defense Force, according to government sources.

Here is a link to video of the assassination attempt of Japan’s Ex-PM Shinzo Abe.

Authorities said the ex-prime minister was hit in the back by a shotgun. An NHK reporter present at the campaign event heard two shots and saw Shinzo bleeding.

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida condemned the shooting of the 67-year-old former leader “in the strongest possible terms,” saying such a barbaric act should never be tolerated.

The assailant’s motive is not fully known, he said.

Abe was in Nara to support a candidate running in the July 10 House of Councillors election and there was a crowd of people listening to his speech near the railway station when the shooting occurred.

A Kyodo News reporter at the scene saw the assassin silently approach Abe, who had been speaking for several minutes, before shooting him.

Louds screams were heard from the crowd and Abe fell to the ground seconds later. Yamagami was swiftly arrested by cops.

A campaign staff member desperately tried to revive Abe by pushing on his chest with both hands as he lay on the ground with his eyes closed. People nearby called for medical assistance.

The gun used by the shooter was likely illegally possessed: Japan has strict gun laws.

LU Staff

LU Staff

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