Update: The Guardian reports Shinzo Abe has just died in the hospital.
Japan’s former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was in heart failure after apparently being shot during a campaign speech Friday in western Japan, NHK public television said Friday.
The broadcaster aired footage showing Abe collapsed on the street, with several security guards running toward him. Abe was holding his chest when he collapsed, with his shirt smeared with blood. NHK says Abe was rushed to a hospital.
The suspect in the shooting of Shinzo Abe on Friday used a gun that he appears to have made himself, according to Japan’s public broadcaster NHK, citing police.
The suspect, Yamagami Tetsuya, is a Nara resident in his 40s, NHK reported, citing police sources.
The man did not attempt to run away, NHK reported. He is being held for questioning at Nara Nishi police station.
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 held office from 2006 to 2007 and again from 2012 to 2020 — making him the longest-serving Japanese Prime Minister in history. He stepped down as Prime Minister in 2020 before the end of his term, citing health reasons.