KABUL (Pajhwok): Japan’s former prime minister Shinzo Abe was pronounced dead on Friday afternoon after he was shot at a campaign event.
Abe, 67, was delivering a speech when a suspect opened fire at him from behind in the western city of Nara.
He was taken to hospital where he died at 5:3pm, the hospital treating him confirmed.
“Shinzo Abe was transported to (the hospital) at 12:20pm. He was in a state of cardiac arrest upon arrival. Resuscitation was administered. However, unfortunately he died at 5:03pm,” said Hidetada Fukushima, professor of emergency medicine at Nara Medical University hospital.
NHK quoted the suspect, identified as Tetsuya Yamagami, as telling police he was dissatisfied with Abe and wanted to kill him. He has since been taken into custody.
The suspect opened fire on Abe from behind with an apparently homemade gun as he spoke at a drab traffic island, Japanese media showed earlier.
Footage broadcast by NHK showed Abe standing on a stage when a loud blast was heard with smoke visible in the air.
Security officials were then seen tackling a man in a grey T-shirt and beige trousers.
It was the first assassination of a sitting or former Japanese premier since the days of prewar militarism in the 1930s.
Nara emergency services said he had been wounded on the right side of his neck and left clavicle.
His brother, Defence Minister Nobuo Kishi, had said earlier that Abe was getting blood transfusions.
Speaking before Abe’s death was announced, incumbent Prime Minister Fumio Kishida condemned the shooting in the “strongest terms” while Japanese people and world leaders expressed shock at the violence in a country in which political violence is rare and guns are tightly controlled.