Crowds and explosions: Japanese PM ejected during speech

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida resumed his election campaign on Saturday, with an earlier interruption following the explosion as he prepared to deliver a speech in the west of the country, Japanese media reported.

“There was a loud explosion … the police are investigating to find out the details, but I want to apologize for causing worry and inconvenience to many people,” Mr Kishida said early on Saturday. In front of Wakayama Station, a few kilometers from where the incident took place. “There is an important campaign unfolding for our country and we must work together to see it through,” he added.

He was due to attend another public event later in the afternoon in Chiba, near Tokyo.

On Saturday morning (local time), the Japanese leader was about to speak in support of his party’s candidate in the mid-term elections at the fishing port of Saigasaki, and was tasting local fish when a movement of panic gripped him. crowd According to the Kyodo news agency, an object resembling a “smoke bomb” was thrown, and TV footage showed crowds moving before the explosion and smoke was released.

NHK broadcast footage showed police holding a man to the ground as the crowd dispersed, and a man was arrested at the scene on suspicion of “disrupting business”.

No official confirmation was immediately released by authorities. Police declined to comment.

Nine months after the incident Former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was assassinated During an election campaign event last July, it shocked Japan and abroad and forced the archipelago to reconsider its security arrangements.

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