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Germany Reacts to Shinzō Abe’s Assassination

The news of Shinzō Abe’s murder has shocked Berlin. Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Chancellor Olaf Scholz and other politicians expressed their sympathies with Japan and the former Prime Minister’s family.

Berlin, July 8th, 2022. Update 8:00 p.m. CEDT (The Berlin Spectator) — After Shinzō Abe’s murder in the Japanese town of Nara, Germany’s President Frank-Walter Steinmeier offered his condolences to the former Prime Minister’s next of kin, Emperor Naruhito and the Japanese people. “I strongly condemn the brutal murder of a democratically elected representative”, Steinmeier said. “As democrats, we shall never accept the fact that elected representatives have to fear for their lives”.

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Dark Hour

“In this dark hour, our thoughts are with the family of the victim and the Japanese people whom we are closely linked to and share our common values with, such as constitutionality and democracy”, the President stated. In a letter to Emperor Naruhito, Steinmeier wrote “the sudden and violent death of the former Prime Minister Shinzō Abe shocked and saddened me.

“On behgalf of the Federal Republic of Germany I offer you, the next of kin and all Japanese my deepest sympathies”, the letter said according to the Office of the Federal President. During his long term, Shinzō Abe had cooperated with Germany closely and trustfully, both bilaterally and internationally, Steinmeier stated. He had always been “a constructive and reliable partner in our mutual commitment for multilateralism, free trade, a peaceful settlement of conflicts and the rules-based order”.

Big Statesman

The hospitality Shinzō Abe had shown when he and his wife had visited Japan was unforgotten, Steinmeier said. “I will never forget our amicable and open talks. I will keep in grateful memory.” Japan had lost a big statesman and distinguished politician. The German President wished Shinzō Abe’s next of kin and the Japanese people “consolation and strength in times of sadness.”

Chancellor Olaf Scholz commented by saying Shinzō Abe’s murder “leaves me shocked and deeply saddened. My deepest sympathy goes to his family, my colleague Fumio Kishida and our Japanese friends. We stand by Japan’s side in these difficult hours.”

Brutal Murder

“I’m shocked by the news that Shinzō Abe was shot”, Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock twittered. “My thoughts are with him and his family.” Ursula von der Leyen, the German President of the E.U. Commission, said Shinzō Abe had been “a wonderful person, great democrat and champion of the multilateral world order. I mourn with his family, his friends and all the people of Japan. This brutal and cowardly murder of shocks the whole world.”

Photo at top of page by 首相官邸 (see license)

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