Former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has died, after he was shot during a campaign speech ahead of elections on Sunday.
Abe, who was the country’s longest serving Prime minster, was shot shot in the city of Nara while campaigning for a parliamentary election, according to local media.
He was airlifted to hospital in grave conditions but later died.
“Shinzo Abe was transported to [the hospital] at 12:20 pm. He was in a state of cardiac arrest upon arrival. Resuscitation was administered. However, unfortunately he died at 5:03pm,” Hidetada Fukushima, professor of emergency medicine at Nara Medical University hospital, told reporters on Friday.
He said Abe died of blood loss, despite being administered blood transfusions in large quantities.
Police say a 41-year-old man suspected of carrying out the shooting has been arrested.
The shooting is unprecedented in a country where gun and political violence are virtually unknown.
The attack has prompted shock and condemnation worldwide.
Abe served as Japan’s prime minister from December 2012 to September 2020.