Japan ex-leader Shinzo Abe apparently shot, in heart failure


TOKYO (AP) — Japan’s former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe collapsed bleeding and was in heart failure after apparently being shot during a campaign speech in western Japan, NHK public television said Friday.

NHK says Abe, 67, was rushed to a hospital.

Witnesses reported hearing gunshots in the apparent attack in Nara. He was standing while making an election campaign speech ahead of Sunday’s election for the parliament’s upper house.

Abe is Japan’s longest-serving prime minister, having served two separate terms, from 2006 to 2007 and from 2012 to 2020. According to Britannica, both Abe’s grandfather and great-uncle previously served as Japan’s prime minister, from 1957 to 1960 and from 1964 to 1972, respectively.

Abe announced his resignation as prime minister in August 2020, citing ongoing issues with ulcerative colitis. He was succeeded as prime minister by his former chief cabinet secretary Suga Yoshihide, who served through 2021.

This is a developing story.

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