The former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has died after being shot while delivering a campaign speech.
Japan’s public broadcaster NHK aired footage of the 67-year-old collapsed on the street in the western city of Nara.
It said it appeared Mr Abe was shot from behind and it looked as if he went into a state of cardiac arrest – collapsing while holding his chest, with his shirt smeared with blood.
Two other news stations reported that he had been shot in the left side of his chest and in the neck.
Earlier, the current prime minister Fumio Kishida said Mr Abe was in a “grave condition”.
Shortly after 10am Irish time NHK said Mr Abe had died. Reuters reports that his death was also confirmed by a source within the ruling Liberal Democrat Party
Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno said police had arrested a middle-aged man in connection with the shooting.
NHK said the suspect told police he was unhappy with Mr Abe and intended to kill him.
Mr Abe became Japan’s longest serving prime minister after serving two terms before stepping down due to health reasons in 2020.