Man Accused of Killing Shinzo Abe Believed Former Japanese Prime Minister Was Linked to Religious Group He Blamed for Family Troubles

Yamagami allegedly shot and killed Abe with a homemade gun in Nara, Japan on July 8, 2022. (Nara Shimbun/Kyodo News via AP)

The man accused of gunning down Shinzo Abe believed the former Japanese prime minister was linked to a religious group he blamed for breaking up his family and causing his mother’s bankruptcy, police said.

Tetsuya Yamagami, 41, told police his original intention was to attack the leader of the group — which authorities declined to name, The Guardian reported.

“My mother got wrapped up in a religious group and I resented it,” the Kyodo news agency and other media quoted him as telling police.

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Japan’s longest serving prime minister was killed Friday during a campaign stop near a train station in the western city of Nara. Yamagami was arrested at the scene, wielding a homemade gun.

Initial reports said Yamagami believed Abe was tied to a “specific organization” but did not describe its religious nature. The group has not been named.

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SOURCE: New York Post, Jon Levine

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