Reactions to shooting of Japan’s former PM Shinzo Abe

An ambulance seen at the site where former Japan PM Shinzo Abe was reportedly shot, in Nara, Japan, on July 8, 2022. PHOTO: REUTERS/KYODO

Japanese former prime minister Shinzo Abe was shot on Friday while campaigning in the city of Nara, a government spokesman said.

Here are some reactions:

Singapore President Halimah Yacob

"Saddened and shocked to hear about the horrific attack on former Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzo. We last met during the Enthronement Ceremony of His Majesty Emperor Naruhito.

"May Mr Abe, his family and the people of Japan find strength during this difficult time," she wrote on Facebook.

Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong

"I am deeply shocked to learn that former Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzo was shot in Nara Prefecture this morning. This is a senseless act of violence. Mr Abe is in critical condition and doctors are working to save him. 

Mr Abe is a good friend of Singapore. I had just hosted him to lunch in May, on my visit to Tokyo. My thoughts and prayers are with Mr Abe and his family," PM Lee wrote on Facebook.

US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken

“I do have to say before we meet how deeply saddened and deeply concerned we are by the news coming from Japan about the attempt on the life of Prime Minister Abe. We don’t know his condition, we do know he’s been shot and our thoughts and prayers are with him and his family, with the people of Japan. This is a very, very sad moment and we’re waiting news from Japan.”

Former US President Trump

Former US President Donald Trump shared his well wishes for former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on his social media platform Truth Social, calling the shooting "absolutely devastating news."

Abe "was a true friend of mine and, much more importantly, America," Trump wrote. "This is a tremendous blow to the wonderful people of Japan, who loved and admired him so much. We are all praying for Shinzo and his beautiful family!"

US Ambassador to Japan Rahm Emanuel in a statement

“Abe-san has been an outstanding leader of Japan and unwavering ally of the United States.”

“The US government and American people are praying for the well-being of Abe-san, his family, and the people of Japan.”

White House spokesperson

“We are shocked and saddened to hear about the violent attack against former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. We are closely monitoring the reports and keeping our thoughts with his family and the people of Japan.

European Council President Charles Michel, in tweet

He said on Friday he was “shocked and saddened by (the) cowardly attack” on Abe, “a true friend, fierce defender of multilateral order & democratic values”.

“(The) EU stands with people of Japan and (Prime Minister) Fumio Kishida in these difficult times. Profound sympathies to his family.”

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, in tweet

“Dear @AbeShinzo, stay strong! Our thoughts and prayers are with your family and the people of Japan," the tweet says, with a photo of her standing in front of the European Union and Japanese flags.

South Korea's Foreign Minister Park Jin

He conveyed his thoughts over the shooting to his Japanese counterpart Yoshimasa Hayashi, on the sidelines of Group of 20 meeting in Bali on Friday. Park said the news is "very shocking" and that "I wish for Abe's recovery".

Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese in tweet

“Shocking news from Japan that former PM Shinzo Abe has been shot – our thoughts are with his family and the people of Japan at this time.”

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in tweet

"Deeply distressed by the attack on my dear friend Abe Shinzo. Our thoughts and prayers are with him, his family, and the people of Japan."

Indian opposition leader Rahul Gandhi, in tweet

"Shocked to hear the news of the attack on former PM of Japan, Shinzo Abe, who has been instrumental in deepening Indo-Japanese ties. Prayers for his recovery. My thoughts are with his family."

Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi

Teuku Faizasyah, Indonesia’s foreign ministry spokesman on behalf of Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi, said in a statement: “The minister has expressed her sympathies in the name of G20 foreign ministers to the Japanese foreign minister.”

Philippine Foreign Minister Enrique Manalo, in tweet

"It is with great shock and dismay that I learned of the shooting of former Prime Minister ABE Shinzo on 08 July 2022 in Nara. I extend my deep sympathy and pray for his early recovery."

Thailand's Tanee Sangrat, director-general of the Department of Information

"Thailand expresses deep concern over incident. It is shocking that such an incident has happened in a peaceful country like Japan, (of which) Thailand has a very special relationship with," Tanee Sangrat, who is also spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, told reporters.

Malaysian Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob, in tweet

"I am shocked and deeply concerned after hearing about the attack on former Japanese PM @AbeShinzo. I condemn this heinous act. I pray for Mr Abe’s recovery, and for the strength of the Japanese people during this difficult time."


Taiwan President Tsai Ing-Wen in facebook post

“I believe everyone is as surprised and sad as I am. Taiwan and Japan are both democratic countries with rule of law. On behalf of my government, I would like to severely condemn violent and illegal acts.

“Former Prime Minister Abe is not only a good friend of mine, but also a staunch friend of Taiwan’s. He has supported Taiwan for many years and spared no effort to promote the progress of Taiwan-Japan relations.”

Former Olympics Minister Yoshitaka Sakurada

“I can’t believe that something like this could happen in the 21st century. There’s still Russia, that was beyond expectations as well, but I can’t believe something like this could happen in Japan.”

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