By Sahil Pandey
New Delhi [India], July 8 (ANI): Former Indian Ambassador to Japan, Sujan Chinoy, on Friday said that former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who was shot today during an election speech, was a colossus in the Japanese political landscape and had done a lot for Indo-Japan ties.
“We woke up to the devastating news that there has been an attempt on the life of Shinzo Abe in Nara. Greatly saddens me to comment on this situation right now. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is a colossus who strode and continues to be in our prayers today. He has done such a lot for our bilateral, special strategic and global partnership,” Chinoy had told ANI before the news of Shinzo Abe’s demise.
Chinoy, who was India’s Ambassador to Japan from 2015-2018, mentioned that PM Abe established a personal rapport with India and had a special place in his heart.
“Several years ago, he wrote a book called Utsukushii kuni and this book was about the beautiful country and in that, he had made special mention of India. So in his first term in 2007, which was short-lived, and in his second term between 2012 and 2020, when he became Japan’s longest-serving Prime Minister ever he had done a great deal for the bilateral relationship,” Chinoy, who is currently DG of Manohar Parrikar Institute for Defence Studies & Analyses had said.
Former Indian envoy also called the relationship Shinzo Abe shared with Prime Minister Narendra Modi as special due to the rapport shared between the two leaders.
“Prime Minister Narendra Modi has always given a special place to Japan in his foreign policy. And even as the Chief Minister of Gujarat, he had established a great rapport with that country and with its leaders in and out of office. On the Japanese end and Prime Minister Modi always made it a point to connect with Japan’s leaders, especially Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and that special relationship between the two countries and between the two prime ministers has contributed a great deal to this relationship,” he had added.
As per Chinoy, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has always been someone who attached great importance to Japan’s defence and security. “We have seen that after he came to power in 2012, Japan reviewed its defence export policy. Japan also reviewed its policies with regard to what we call a collective security. And Japan also time and again reviewed and reaffirmed the security alliance partnership with the United States.”
Recalling his experience and his interaction with PM Abe, he said, “He’s an extremely popular politician. You might call him a people person and very affable, very friendly, very down-to-earth. And in all my brief interactions with him, he was able to put me at ease. He’s an extremely popular politician. You might call him a people person and very affable, very friendly, very down-to-earth. And in all my brief interactions with him, he was able to put me at ease.”
Former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was on Friday confirmed dead after he was shot at during a campaign speech in Nara City, western Japan, local media reported citing officials.
Abe, Japan’s longest-serving prime minister, stepped down in 2020 citing health reasons. He was prime minister of Japan twice, from 2006-07 and again from 2012-20. He was succeeded by Yoshihide Suga and later by Fumio Kishida.
Earlier today Abe, 67, was rushed to hospital after he collapsed at 11.30 am (local time) during a campaign speech in the western Japanese city of Nara ahead of Sunday’s elections for Japan’s upper house of Parliament.
Initial media reports, citing authorities said that it appeared that Abe was shot at in the chest and described the condition of the former PM as in “cardiopulmonary arrest.”
Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida earlier in his live address to the country today said that his condition of Abe was grave. “This is not a forgivable act,” Kishida said adding that authorities would “take appropriate measures to handle the situation.”
Kishida further said that the motive behind Abe’s shooting is not known. The media outlet citing government sources also reported that Abe’s shooting suspect is an ex-member of Japan’s Self-Defense Forces.
The Japanese PM also requested everyone to not speculate about any political ramifications at the time. Japanese Police have identified the suspect arrested for shooting Abe as Tetsuya Yamagami, a 41-year-old resident of Nara City, according to local media. (ANI)
This report is auto-generated from ANI news service. ThePrint holds no responsibility for its content.