TOKYO. Former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe collapsed and passed out after he was apparently shot at while speaking in western Japan on Friday, according to a fire department spokesman.
mr. Abe, 67, appeared to be bleeding to death after a gunshot was fired in the city of Nara near Kyoto. NHK, public broadcaster. It is reported by Kyodo News. Abe was shot in the chest.
The NHK television channel, citing the police, reported that the suspect, 42-year-old Tetsuya Yamagami, was taken into custody. The message says that he was a resident of Nara.
Seigo Yasuhara, an official at the Nara Fire Command Center, said Mr. Wu Abe had cardiopulmonary failure and was taken by ambulance to a helicopter for a medical evacuation. He was then taken to the Nara Medical University Hospital, the Nara Fire Department said.
mr. Abe was unconscious and showed no signs of life. Yasuhara said.
mr. Abe was longest serving prime minister and served two terms, from 2006 to 2007 and from 2012 to 2020. He retired in 2020 due to poor health.
The former prime minister was in Nara ahead of elections to the Upper House of Parliament scheduled for Sunday. mr. Abe was giving a campaign speech on behalf of Kei Sato, 43, a sitting member of the Upper House running for re-election in Nara, when he was shot dead.
Fumio Kishida, the current prime minister, was campaigning in Yamagata Prefecture and was scheduled to return to Tokyo to address the media.
Hirokazu Matsuno, chief cabinet secretary under Prime Minister Kishida, said a crisis management center had been set up in the prime minister’s office.
Rahm Emanuel, US Ambassador to Japan Twitter post says: “We are all saddened and shocked,” adding: “Abe-san was an outstanding leader of Japan and a staunch ally of the United States. The US government and the American people pray for the well-being of Abe-san, his family, and the people of Japan.”