[News] World Leaders React to Assassination of Former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe: 'A Tragedy for Japan'


Current and former world leaders are reacting to the news that former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was assassinated on Friday morning local time.

Abe — who served as prime minister of Japan from 2006 to 2007, and from 2012 to 2020 — died from gunshot wounds sustained during a campaign speech in Nara, Japan on Friday morning.

President Joe Biden issued a statement Friday, calling the assassination "a tragedy for Japan and for all who knew [Abe]."

"Above all, he cared deeply about the Japanese people and dedicated his life to their service. Even at the moment he was attacked, he was engaged in the work of democracy," Biden said. "While there are many details that we do not yet know, we know that violent attacks are never acceptable and that gun violence always leaves a deep scar on the communities that are affected by it."

Biden added: "The United States stands with Japan in this moment of grief. I send my deepest condolences to his family."

Former President Barack Obama shared his shock and sadness at the news on Twitter, writing that his "friend and longtime partner" Abe "was devoted to both the country he served and the extraordinary alliance between the United States and Japan."

"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," Obama continued.

Former President George W. Bush also offered condolences in a statement in which he called Abe's assassination "senseless."

"I am deeply saddened to learn of the senseless assassination of former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe," Bush said. "I had the privilege of getting to know him during his first time as Prime Minister in 2006 and found him to be a decent and caring man. Shinzo Abe was a patriot of his country who wanted to continue serving it."

Former President Donald Trump also offered a statement on the TRUTH Social platform, calling Abe's death "really BAD NEWS FOR THE WORLD!"

In his own statement, U.S. Sec. of State Antony Blinken offered his "sincerest condolences on the tragic passing of former Prime Minister of Japan Abe Shinzo."

"Prime Minister Abe was a global leader and unwavering ally and friend of the United States, whose vision of a Free and Open Indo-Pacific lifted our Alliance cooperation to new heights," Blinken said in his statement. "We offer our thoughts to Prime Minister Abe's family and the people of Japan. Together with them and the world, we mourn his passing."

French President Emmanuel Macron stated that he was also "Deeply shocked by the heinous attack that Shinzo Abe suffered," on Twitter Friday. "Thoughts to the family and loved ones of a great Prime Minister. France stands alongside the Japanese people," Macron said.

Outgoing British Prime Minister Boris Johnson – who announced his forthcoming resignation from 10 Downing Street Thursday – said in a tweet that he was, "Utterly appalled and saddened to hear about the despicable attack on Shinzo Abe. My thoughts are with his family and loved ones."

"Incredibly sad news about Shinzo Abe. His global leadership through unchartered times will be remembered by many," Johnson continued. "My thoughts are with his family, friends and the Japanese people. The UK stands with you at this dark and sad time."

Other world leaders who issued statements included German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, who tweeted: "Even in these difficult hours, we stand close to Japan," and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, who wrote: "This heinous act of violence has no excuse."

According to the Fire and Disaster Management Agency of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications in Tokyo, Abe, was shot in the right side of his neck at around 11:30 a.m. local time while speaking at a campaign rally ahead of Japan's Upper House elections on Sunday, Japan's public media organization NHK, reported. He then collapsed and was immediately rushed to Nara Medical University for treatment, the outlet said.

A spokesperson for Nara Medical University confirmed the tragic news of Abe's assassination in a press conference Friday, reported CNN. Abe was officially pronounced dead at 5:03 p.m. local time, the outlet added. He was 67.

Police have arrested Yamagami Tetsuya in connection with the attack, NHK confirmed Friday, adding that a handmade gun was discovered at the scene.

Post a Comment