Former Japanese Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, on Friday succumbed to his injuries and died, aged 67. He was shot in broad daylight while addressing a crowd in the western city of Nara.

He was the longest serving Japanese PM and resigned in 2020. Following the attack, he was flown to hospital via helicopter, while his death was confirmed and first reported on Japan’s public broadcaster, NHK.

Japanese media report that his speech was interrupted by two loud bangs, and that it transpired that he was shot on the left side of his chest, as well as his neck. Footage shows the now deceased former PM stumbling to the ground after the two gun shots.

The suspected attacker was immediately taken into custody by security officials at the event.

A conservative politician, Mr Abe had been in Nara campaigning ahead of this Sunday’s upper house elections. He rose to worldwide fame through his approach to economic policy, known as ‘Abenomics’, a strategy he devised to lift the third-biggest economy out of deflation. He was also well known for pushing Japan’s military to take a more prominent role in countering threats posed by North Korea and China.

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Former Japanese PM Shinzo Abe / Facebook photo

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