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Shinzo Abe, who helped strengthen India-Japan ties, assassinated during election campaign 5/5 (4)

Former Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was died after being shot during a campaign trail in Nara on Friday, reported local media house NHK.

The incident occurred at around 8.30 am IST. Shinzo Abe was making a campaign speech on a street ahead of Sunday’s election when he was shot. NHK quoted police sources as saying he was likely hit from behind by shotgun fire.

A suspect was detained at the scene and is being questioned, according to a report by news agency AFP.

In 2014, Shinzo Abe and Prime Minister Narendra Modi agreed to upgrade bilateral ties to "Special Strategic and Global Partnership". The relationship grew and encompassed issues from civilian nuclear energy to maritime security, bullet trains to quality infrastructure, Act East policy to Indo-Pacific strategy.

Shinzo Abe was the first Japanese PM to be chief guest at India's Republic Day parade in 2014. This reflected his commitment towards an India relationship.

In his first stint in 2006-07, Abe visited India and addressed Parliament. During his second stint, he visited India thrice (January 2014, December 2015, September 2017) — the most visits by any Japanese PM.

Abe was a valuable G-7 leader for India, and focused on strategic, economic and political deliverables, and not getting distracted by India’s domestic developments — much to New Delhi’s comfort.

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