Japanese prosecutors charge Mann with murder in Abe assassination

Japanese prosecutors on Friday charged the man accused of killing former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe with murder and violating gun laws, local media said.

Tetsuya Yamagami was arrested immediately after the former Japanese prime minister was shot dead last July while he was delivering a campaign speech in the western city of Nara.

Abe’s final moments

The spectators of the event could approach him fairly easily.

Footage broadcast by NHK shows him on a stage as a loud explosion was heard and smoke was seen in the air.

Yamagami is then thrown to the ground by security guards.

“He was giving a speech and a man came from behind,” a young woman at the scene told NHK at the time.

“The first shot sounded like a toy. He didn’t fall and there was a big bang. The second shot was more visible; you could see the sparks and the smoke,” she added.

“After the second shot, people surrounded him and gave him cardiac massage.”

Abe, 67, collapsed and was bleeding from the neck.

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Abe laid two rest

Japanese and foreign dignitaries paid tribute to the assassinated former prime minister at a state funeral last September that drew mourners and protesters alike to central Tokyo.

Prime Minister Fumio Kishida described the former leader in a eulogy as “the courage of courage” and listed his accomplishments, including efforts to strengthen Japan’s diplomatic ties.

“I feel heartbreaking sadness,” Kishida said as he faced a photo of Abe hanging above a large flower structure displaying his ashes, medals and the Japanese flag.

The decorative box of ashes had been carried by his widow, Akie, to Tokyo’s legendary Budokan venue, where a 19-gun salute was fired in honor of the slain politician.

Abe was Japan’s longest-serving prime minister and one of the country’s most prominent political figures, known for fostering international alliances and his “Abenomics” economic strategy.

He resigned in 2020 due to recurring health problems, but remained a major political voice and campaigned for his ruling party when a lone gunman with a homemade gun killed him on July 8.

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