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Former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has died after being shot while giving a Campaign speech – Local media

The former Prime Minister of Japan has been pronounced dead after being shot in the chest during a Campaign speech in Nara, Suspect was arrested.

Shinzo Abe was Japan’s longest-serving prime minister.

Abe was unconscious when he was rushed to a hospital and was bleeding from the chest.

The police have arrested the man suspected of attacking Abe, who was giving a speech in front of Yamato Saidaiji Station when the incident took place at around 11:30 a.m. Campaigning had been underway for Sunday’s Upper House election.

Videos of the incident showed two shots being fired. Japan is known for having one of the strictest gun control laws in the world.

Abe suffered an injury to the right side of his neck due to a gunshot and was bleeding internally in the left side of his chest, according to the Fire and Disaster Management Agency. The former prime minister was transported via a medical helicopter to Nara Medical University Hospital in the city of Kashihara, south of central Nara, according to NHK, who quoted ambulance officials.

The man was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder, and the gun was confiscated, according to the broadcaster. Police identified the man as Tetsuya Yamagami, a 41-year-old resident of the city of Nara.

Government officials said that the suspect had been a Maritime Self-Defense Force officer for three years until around 2005.

Yamagami told investigators he “had grievances” with the former prime minister and had intended to kill him.

The gun used in the attack appeared to be hand-made, with the media footage showing an object with what looked like two barrels wrapped in black tape lying on the ground after the attack.

Shortly after flying back to the Prime Minister’s Office in Tokyo from Yamagata Prefecture by helicopter, Kishida had said that doctors were doing everything they could to save Abe’s life.

“It was a despicable, barbaric act that happened during election campaigning, the foundation of democracy,” Kishida told reporters. “It is an unforgivable act.”

Kishida said he ordered ministers campaigning outside of Tokyo o return to the capital immediately, and that he would convene a Cabinet meeting later Friday.

High school students who witnessed the shooting told NHK that a man came up from behind and fired two shots.

“The first shot sounded like a toy bazooka, and the man then stepped back after the first one,” a student said. After the attacker fired the second shot, a large amount of white smoke appeared, she added.

People in Japan expressed shock at the use of a gun in the attack, a rare occurrence in the country.

He previously became prime minister in 2005, only to step down a year later due to his health.

SourceNHK

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