Shinzo Abe’s funeral will be held on Tuesday for family and close friends

TOKYO – A private funeral for family and friends of assassinated former Japanese leader Shinzo Abe will be held Tuesday at Tokyo’s Zojo-ji Temple, where dignitaries a day earlier paid their respects in a traditional tsuya ceremony to send the dead away.

The funeral will take place at 1pm, followed by a procession to carry Abe’s body to the political institutions where his legacy plays a major role: the Kantei, or Prime Minister’s office; the state parliament or national legislation; and the headquarters of his ruling party, the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP). Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and senior LDP leaders are expected to attend the service on Tuesday.

Tokyo residents lined up Tuesday to pay respects and lay flowers to the LDP office and Zojo-ji Temple. Abe, the youngest prime minister elected, served the longest in the role and remained a leader in domestic politics even after resigning in 2020.

The Japanese government has honored Abe with its highest award, the Collar of the Supreme Order of the Chrysanthemum, making him the fourth prime minister of post-war Japan to receive this honor. The national flag was flown at half-mast at the prime minister’s office in Tokyo until Tuesday.

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The loss of Japan’s most prominent politician, who was gunned down in Nara at the age of 67 while campaigning for another LDP politician ahead of the upper house election, horrified a nation unaccustomed to gun violence.

Plans for a state funeral have not yet been released. But dignitaries from around the world are already planning to attend and pay homage to the leader, who strove to increase Japan’s global influence during his nearly nine-year second term as prime minister.

Honors poured in from around the world, and US leaders emphasized Abe’s contribution to the US-Japan alliance. On Tuesday, US Ambassador Rahm Emanuel attended the tsuya along with Treasury Secretary Janet L. Yellen, who was in town to discuss economic sanctions against Russia. Foreign Minister Antony Blinken made a refueling stop between trips to meet and show respect with Kishida.

During his 2012-2020 tenure, Abe forged deeper ties with European countries and emphasized a strong alliance with the United States even as then-President Donald Trump tested long-standing ties with allies. The couple developed a close personal bond and often played golf together.

Trump told Breitbart News in an interview over the weekend that he would like to attend Abe’s funeral, presumably indicative of a possible state funeral. Trump said he is contacting Abe’s family to try and make arrangements.

The man accused of Abe’s murder, 41-year-old Tetsuya Yamagami from Nara, told investigators he believes the former prime minister is linked to a religious group, which he blames for his mother’s financial difficulties. Yamagami is suspected of targeting Abe with a homemade weapon.

The Unification Church, officially known as the Family League for World Peace and Unification, has come into focus after the shootings. On Monday, the head of the Unification Church in Japan said Yamagami’s mother is a member, but police have not yet identified the religious organization.

On Tuesday, Japanese media reported that bullet holes were found on the facade of the Unification Church building in Nara. The suspect told investigators he tested his gun there before shooting Abe, Japanese TV station Fuji News Network reported. Shinzo Abe’s funeral will be held on Tuesday for family and close friends

Dustin Huang

Dustin Huang is a 24ssports U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Dustin Huang joined 24ssports in 2021 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing:

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