Former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was assassinated Friday on a street in western Japan by a gunman who shot him from behind as he delivered a campaign speech — an attack that stunned a nation with some of the world’s strictest gun-control laws.
The 67-year-old Abe, who was Japan’s longest-serving leader when he resigned in 2020, collapsed bleeding and was airlifted to a nearby hospital. He was later pronounced dead after receiving massive blood transfusions, officials said.
The head of Nara Medical University’s emergency department, Hidetada Fukushima, said Abe suffered major damage to his heart, along with two neck wounds that damaged an artery.
A suspect gunman was arrested at the scene and identified as Tetsuya Yamagami, 41, a former member of Japan’s navy. Public broadcaster NHK reported that he said he wanted to kill Abe for reasons unrelated to politics.