Prime Minister Narendra Modi will join world leaders in bidding farewell to former Japanese premier Shinzo Abe at his state funeral on September 27 in Japan.
Abe, Japan’s longest-serving prime minister, was shot dead on July 8 while delivering a campaign speech in western Japan ahead of the House of Councillors election on July 10. Modi will visit Japan on September 27 to attend the state funeral, the Ministry of External Affairs said.
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He will also separately meet Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida during the visit. Modi had a close relationship with Abe. He had condoled the demise of his “dear friend” Abe and said the former Japanese premier dedicated his life to making the world a better place.
The state funeral for Abe has split public opinion in Japan. The only other state funeral held for a former government leader in postwar Japan was for the prime minister who signed the treaty that ended the U.S. occupation of Japan. Prime Minister Fumio Kishida has insisted Abe deserved a state funeral for raising Japan’s global profile as its longest-serving postwar leader. He said Japan must respond with courtesy to the outpouring of condolences from foreign leaders. Vice President Kamala Harris will lead the US delegation.
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(With inputs from agencies)