Former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is assassinated at a campaign rally

Former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is assassinated at a campaign rally

Former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, an ultra-nationalist who served in the post longer

than anyone else before stepping down in 2020, was shot and killed on Friday at a campaign rally.

Police tackled and arrested the suspected gunman at the scene of an attack that shocked many in Japan

which is one of the world's safest nations and has some of the strictest gun control laws anywhere.

"It is barbaric and malicious and it cannot be tolerated," 

current Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida told the media.

Abe, 67, served as prime minister in 2006 and 2007, and again from 2012 to 2020,

when he suddenly resigned citing health issues. Despite leaving office,

 he remained influential within the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) and continued to be a force on Japan's political landscape.

He was in the city of Nara, in the southwest, campaigning for a parliamentary election when he was shot from behind

by a man wielding what appears in photos to be a homemade gun

Footage of the attack shows Abe standing, holding a microphone and speaking, when two booming shots ring out.

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