July 9, 2022, 11.14 AM

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida condemned the “sneaky barbaric” attack, saying it occurred during elections that form the very heart of Japan’s democracy. He declined to comment on the political implications of the shooting. Japanese officials have said the election will continue.

Abe was Japan’s longest-serving prime minister. He stepped down in August 2020, citing ill health, but had remained active in politics. He remained an influential voice in the country’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party.

Even before the shooting, Abe was expected to have a major impact on Sunday’s election, the outcome of which could be crucial not only for Japan’s economy but also for its future defense posture.

Also readIndonesian President Jokowi Sends Get-Well Wish to Japanese PM Abe

Abe had been one of the most prominent voices calling for Japan to revise its pacifist constitution, which was drafted by US-led Allied forces occupying the country after World War II.

World Leaders Express Shock, Sadness

World leaders expressed shock and sadness after former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was shot and killed.

US President Joe Biden offered condolences to Abe’s family. “This is a tragedy for Japan and for all who knew him,” he said in a statement.

Biden spoke about his personal connection with Abe.

“I had the privilege to work closely with Prime Minister Abe. As vice president, I visited him in Tokyo and welcomed him to Washington. He was a champion of the alliance between our nations and the friendship between our people,” Biden said.

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