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Tuesday, December 5, 2023

Suspect in explosives attack on Japan PM Kishida indicted


Japanese prosecutors on Wednesday indicted a man over an explosives attack on Prime Minister Fumio Kishida during an election event in western Japan in April, after concluding that the suspect is mentally fit to be held criminally responsible.

Ryuji Kimura, 24, faces charges including attempted murder, with investigative authorities determining through tests that the homemade pipe bomb used in the attack was lethal.

The indictment of Kimura followed a three-month psychiatric evaluation by prosecutors that ended on Friday.

Kimura, from Hyogo Prefecture, is alleged to have thrown an explosive device towards Kishida as the prime minister was about to make a stump speech at a local fishing port in the city of Wakayama on April 15. While Kishida was not hurt, two people, including a police officer, sustained minor injuries.

Court documents show that Kimura may have harbored a grudge after being unable to file for candidacy for a House of Councillors election held last year.

The alleged assailant has remained silent since his arrest at the scene in Wakayama.

The incident occurred less than a year after former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was fatally shot by an assailant with a homemade gun while making a stump speech in Nara Prefecture, western Japan.

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