Japan's PM Shinzo Abe criticised as tone deaf after lounge-at-home Twitter video with pet dog

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe shared a video of himself lounging on a sofa with his dog, drinking tea and reading. PHOTOS: SCREENGRAB FROM ABESHINZO/TWITTER

TOKYO (REUTERS) - Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Sunday (April 12) prompted an angry response from some Twitter users after sharing a video of himself lounging on a sofa with his dog, drinking tea and reading, along with a message telling people to stay at home.

"Who do you think you are?" became a top trend on Twitter, with users saying Mr Abe's message ignored the plight of those who were struggling to make a living amid the coronavirus outbreak.

Mr Abe's video, which featured his pet dog, was a response to popular musician Gen Hoshino, who uploaded a video of himself singing about dancing indoors and invited people to collaborate.

"At a time when people are fighting for survival, to show a video of such luxury... one can't help but wonder, 'who do you think you are?'" one Twitter user said.

Other Twitter users, though, defended Mr Abe, saying that even the prime minister should be allowed down time.

Mr Abe's representatives were not immediately available for comment outside normal office hours.

The number of novel coronavirus infections in Japan has exceeded 6,000, public broadcaster NHK reported on Saturday. It was the first weekend since Japan declared a state of emergency in major population centres to fight the spread of the coronavirus.

Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.