Japan to carry state funeral for Shinzo Abe; Kamala Harris to attend

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TOKYO — Vice President Harris is predicted to hitch world leaders in Tokyo on Tuesday to commemorate the lifetime of Shinzo Abe, Japan’s longest-serving prime minister, who was assassinated in July.

The state funeral would be the first in Japan in 55 years and solely the second within the postwar period.

The occasion takes place amid anger in Japan that taxpayers will probably be footing the $11.5 million invoice to honor a pacesetter and staunch U.S. ally who was fashionable overseas however typically divisive at residence. Compounding the furor, a scandal has engulfed the ruling Liberal Democratic Social gathering since its ties to a spiritual group got here below the highlight within the weeks because the former conservative chief was fatally shot.

As world gathers to honor Abe, Japan grapples with church’s affect

The suspect, Tetsuya Yamagami, advised police he needed to hold out the assassination as a result of his life and household had been ruined because of his mom’s massive donations to the Unification Church, to which Abe had obvious shut ties. The church has confirmed Yamagami’s mom was a member.

Tons of of protesters gathered on Monday night time exterior certainly one of Tokyo’s most congested subway stations in Shinjuku to protest the funeral. Demonstrations are anticipated exterior the Eating regimen, Japan’s nationwide meeting, in the course of the service, which can start at 2 p.m. native time on the Nippon Budokan corridor within the capital.

Japanese authorities have stepped up safety measures for the event, notably in mild of the acknowledged lapses that enabled the gunman to method Abe and open fireplace with a selfmade weapon throughout a marketing campaign occasion.

About 4,300 friends, together with about 700 from abroad, are anticipated to attend Tuesday’s closed ceremony, in keeping with Nikkei Asia. Members of the general public can go to a park close to the Budokan to supply flowers.

Earlier than the funeral, Harris is scheduled to carry bilateral conferences with South Korean Prime Minister Han Duck-Soo and Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese. Her advisers have mentioned the discussions will broadly be about regional financial and safety points, together with China’s actions within the Taiwan Strait and cooperation in opposition to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

On Monday, after arriving in Tokyo, Harris met with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, providing her condolences for Abe’s demise and emphasizing the U.S.-Japan alliance and U.S. assist for Abe’s imaginative and prescient of a “free and open Indo-Pacific.”

With the U.S. midterm elections weeks away, each President Biden and Harris had supposed to restrict their journey to locations in the USA, touting wins below their administration and campaigning and fundraising for Democrats. However the White Home shifted its plans after the deaths of Abe in July and Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II on Sept. 8.

Japanese police chiefs resign over safety lapses in Abe assassination

“As you will have mentioned, the alliance between Japan and the USA is a cornerstone of what we consider is integral to peace, stability and prosperity within the Indo-Pacific area,” Harris advised Kishida on Monday. “And it’s one thing we’ve prioritized as a result of we additionally consider it’s in the most effective curiosity of the American individuals by way of their safety and prosperity — and we do consider the identical for the Japanese individuals.”

Along with occasions round Abe’s funeral, Harris additionally plans to tour the Zojoji Temple, the place 1000’s of Japanese flocked within the speedy aftermath of the previous chief’s killing to pay their respects.

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