June 15, 2024

US Ambassador saddened and shocked as Japan awaits news on if former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is alive after being shot and rushed to hospital

Shinzo Abe
Shinzo Abe

United States Ambassador to Japan Rahm Emanuel expressed sadness and shock over the recent news that former Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzo was shot while delivering a speech Friday and was immediately rushed to a hospital.

“We are all saddened and shocked by the shooting of former Prime Minister Abe Shinzo. Abe-san has been an outstanding leader of Japan and unwavering ally of the U.S. The U.S. Government and American people are praying for the well-being of Abe-san, his family, & people of Japan,” tweeted U.S. Ambassador Rahm Emanuel.

As information about the tragic shooting and the health of the former prime minister remains limited, the world holds its breath awaiting news about Abe Shinzo’s condition and whether or not he is still alive.

Abe was delivering a speech in the western Japanese city of Nara on Friday when witnesses report that two bangs were heard around 11:30am local time. According to witnesses, a puff of smoke could be seen and the former prime minister fell to the ground and appeared to enter cardiac arrest as his chest was clearly covered in blood. 

A suspect has reportedly been arrested and is in custody. According to Japanese media outlets, Abe has been transported to Nara Medical University in Kashihara.

There have not been any officially verified updates on the former prime minister’s health at this time.

Shinzo Abe was the longest serving prime minister in Japanese history, serving from 2006 to 2007 and again from 2012 to 2020.

While the 67-year-old politician resigned in September of 2020, he has remained a prominent figure and leader in Japan’s Liberal Democratic Party, which has a majority in the nation’s House of Representatives and a strong plurality in its House of Councillors.

Current Japanese prime minister Fumio Kishida is the president of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party.

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