Japan PM resumes campaigning after blast incident

Dainik Nepal Apr 15, 2023 | 19:08

TOKYO: Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida resumed campaigning on Saturday after being evacuated unharmed from the scene of an apparent “smoke bomb” blast.
The incident in western Japan’s Wakayama came less than a year after the assassination of former prime minister Shinzo Abe, which traumatised the country and forced a security shake-up for public officials.

Kishida was in the city to deliver remarks in support of a ruling party candidate and had just finished sampling fish at a local port when a disturbance rippled through the crowd gathered to hear him speak.

Footage from national broadcaster NHK showed the prime minister turning to look backwards as a person was detained by security and people moved away, some shrieking.

Seconds later, a blast was heard and white smoke filled the air. Images in local media showed a silver, pipe-like object on the ground, but it was not immediately clear whether it had caused the blast and smoke.

NHK said a man had been arrested at the scene on suspicion of obstruction of business. Local police declined to comment. People at the scene described moments of panic. “I ran frantically, and then, 10 or so seconds later, there was a loud sound and my kid started crying. I was stunned, my heart is still beating fast,” one woman told NHK.

A man at the scene told the broadcaster that “when we all stopped in front of the podium, someone started saying ‘culprit!’ or something, or ‘an explosive was thrown,’ so everyone started dispersing fast.” “And then, about 10 seconds after the culprit was captured, there was a blast,” he said.


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