World leaders have honored Japan’s former prime minister Shinzo Abe, who was assassinated in July, at a controversial state funeral.
State funeral for former Japan PM Shinzo Abe despite the anger
Japan’s hawkish former leader Shinzo Abe has been honored by a rare and divisive state funeral that was full of militaristic presentation like soldiers carrying his ashes in a box brought by his widow and praise of his nine-year premiership.
Prime Minister Fumio Kishida has said the publicly financed ceremony was a deserved honor for Japan’s longest-serving modern political leader, but it has deeply split public opinion and was met with angry protests.
The event attended by US Vice President Kamala Harris, Japan’s Crown Prince Akishino and other foreign and Japanese dignitaries.
It began with Akie Abe, in a black formal kimono, walking slowly behind Kishida into the funeral venue, carrying the urn in a wooden box wrapped in a purple cloth with gold stripes. Soldiers in white uniforms took Abe’s ashes and placed them on a pedestal filled with white and yellow chrysanthemum flowers and decorations.