Man arrested after throwing “smoke bomb” at Japanese PM: The incident comes less than a year after the assassination of former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe
- Fumio Kishida, the prime minister of Japan, was giving a speech in the western city of Wakayama on Saturday when he was attacked.
- An attacker threw a pipe-like object at Kishida, forcing him to be evacuated from the scene: local media said it was a smoke grenade. Kishida was unhurt
- The police soon arrested the attacker
Japan’s prime minister was forced to go into hiding on Saturday after a pipe-like object believed to be a smoke bomb was thrown during an outdoor speech.
Fumio Kishida was unharmed in the incident, which came after former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was shot dead during the election campaign by a lone assailant with a homemade handgun last year – an attack that stunned the nation.
Kishida’s attacker was quickly arrested.
The attack took place in the western city of Wakayama – just 60 miles from Nara, where Abe, 67, was assassinated on July 8, 2022.
Japan’s public broadcaster NHK reported that a loud explosion was also heard, but the prime minister hid and was unharmed while police were defeating a man at the scene.
The local Kyodo news agency reported that a man threw “what appeared to be a smoke grenade”.
Police in Wakayama, Saturday, were seen detaining a man who threw a pipe-like object at Japan’s prime minister
Fumio Kishida, Prime Minister of Japan, seen shortly before the attack on the fishing port of Saikazaki in Wakayama
A man abandons a cylindrical-shaped object that was thrown at Kishida
Footage broadcast by the Public Broadcasting Corporation showed crowds of people running away, with several police officers appearing to pin a person to the ground before removing him from the scene.
NHK said Kishida had just begun giving a speech after touring the fishing port of Wakayama when the accident occurred.
A city council member who was at the scene told NHK that shortly before the explosion was heard, a “silver cylindrical object” flew about two meters in front of me.
Another eyewitness also reported seeing a “silver cylinder”, saying it was “thrown and then lit a little before a strong sound was heard”.
Kishida was scheduled to give a speech supporting the House of Representatives candidate from the ruling Liberal Democratic Party who was running in a by-election.
Kishida is scheduled to host the G7 leaders’ summit in Hiroshima next month.
The man who threw what appeared to be a smoke bomb at the prime minister was seen being arrested on Saturday