Japan's Ex-PM Abe Dies after Being Shot

Society Politics

Tokyo/Nara, July 8 (Jiji Press)--Former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe died on Friday after being shot while giving a stump speech in the western prefecture of Nara ahead of Sunday's House of Councillors election.

The first murder of a former Japanese prime minister since the end of World War II made headlines around the world, stunning people in and outside Japan.

Abe, 67, died at 5:03 p.m. (8:03 a.m. GMT) after being rushed to prefecture-run Nara Medical University's hospital by helicopter while being in a state of cardiopulmonary arrest, bleeding from his neck and chest, according to local firefighting and other sources.

The man who is believed to have fired the gun was seized at the scene. The Nara prefectural police arrested him on the spot on suspicion of attempting to murder the former prime minister and later set up a headquarters to investigate the incident as a murder case.

Speaking to reporters at the prime minister's office in Tokyo, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said the shooting was "absolutely unacceptable" as a "cowardly criminal act during a campaign for an election, which is a cornerstone of democracy."

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

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