President Uhuru Kenyatta has today joined fellow world leaders in mourning Japan’s former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe who died today after being shot at a political campaign meeting.

The President expressed shock at the former Japanese leader’s sudden demise, and termed him as a dear friend and development ally of the Kenyan nation.

“It is utter shocking and somewhat unbelievable to learn of the death of my friend, and one of Kenya’s foremost development ally, former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, in a savage shooting incident,” President Kenyatta mourned.

Former Prime Minister Abe, who retired in 2020, visited Nairobi in 2016 during the 6th TICAD conference, during which he held bilateral talks with President Kenyatta at State House, Nairobi.

Deputy President Dr. William Ruto in his message penned:

“I  join the Nation of Japan, its people and the world in mourning the passing of former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. He was a visionary leader who helped Japan secure its place in the global order. Rest In Peace”.

Abe was assassinated by a gunman who opened fire at close range as the hugely influential politician delivered a campaign speech. The murder of the 67-year-old, who had been Japan’s longest-serving leader, stunned the nation and prompted an international outpouring of grief and condemnation.

Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has said he is “deeply saddened”.

“The world has lost a great man of vision, and Canada has lost a close friend. “My thoughts are with his wife, Akie, and the people of Japan as they mourn this loss,” he said.

Queen Elizabeth also  sent a message of condolence to the Emperor of Japan.

The UK monarch said:

“My family and I were deeply saddened to hear the news of the sudden and tragic death of former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. “I have fond memories of meeting Mr Abe and his wife during their visit to the United Kingdom in 2016.”His love for Japan, and his desire to forge ever-closer bonds with the United Kingdom, were clear. “I wish to convey my deepest sympathy and condolences to his family and to the people of Japan at this difficult time.”

F ormer US President Donald Trump in his message  described Shinzo Abe as a towering politician on the global stage.

“He was a unifier like no other, but above all, he was a man who loved and cherished his magnificent country, Japan.

“Shinzo Abe will be greatly missed.” Trump added that the suspect “will hopefully be dealt with swiftly and harshly”.