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Japan's firm firearm laws add to shock over Abe's assassination

Japan's firm firearm laws add to shock over Abe's assassination

TOKYO (AP) — The assassination of former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe inside broad daylight Friday shocked a world that has go nearer to associate Japan accompanied by relatively low crime accompanied by every one one other accompanied by strict firearm control.

Japan's longest-serving main minister, Abe was report inside the spine while campaigning inside the city of Nara for parliamentary candidates. He died at a hospital, place of set of two days earlier to the election.

The have a suspicion apparently circumvented the nation's ultra-tight firearm regulations by building his own weapon. Police said the 15-inch (40-centimeter) device was obviously homemade, accompanied by every one one other accompanied by one expert compared it to a muzzle-loading gun. Authorities confiscated similar weapons when they raided the suspect's nearby one-room apartment.

The motive of the man, who was taken into custody at the scene, remained unclear.

Fatal firearm violence is inside effect unheard of inside Japan, accompanied by every one one other accompanied by most Japanese go into with every one other accompanied by not here of actuality lacking at some hour dated handling, or flat seeing, a real gun. Stabbings are additional usual inside killings.

Major universities have rummage clubs, accompanied by every one one other accompanied by Japanese police are armed, nevertheless firearm ownership rights have been a faraway matter for decades. Even police rarely tourist centre to firing their pistols.

With a inhabitants of 125 million, the country had fair 10 gun-related criminal cases last year, resulting inside a single demise accompanied by every one one other accompanied by quartet injuries, according to police. Eight of those cases were gang-related.

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The densely populated earliest city of Tokyo had zero firearm incidents, injuries or deaths all over that same year, although 61 guns were seized there.

"Japanese people are inside a condition of shock," said Shiro Kawamoto, professor at the College of Risk Management at Nihon University inside Tokyo.

"This serves while a wake-up call that firearm violence tin occur inside Japan, accompanied by every one one other accompanied by safety to retain protected from danger Japanese politicians must exist re-examined," Kawamoto said. "To assume this type of assault will never occur would exist a large mistake."

Abe's safety team may face solemn questions. But since such attacks are extraordinary inside Japan, relatively illumination safety is the norm, flat for former main ministers.

The last high-profile shooting occurred inside 2019, when a former gang subscriber was report at a karaoke venue inside Tokyo.

Under Japanese law, ownership of firearms is unlawful lacking a exceptional license. Importing them is excessively illegal. The same rules apply to some kinds of knives accompanied by every one one other accompanied by sure other weapons, exist fond of crossbows.

People who wish to own firearms must go into with every one other accompanied by not here of a stringent background check, including clearance by a doctor, accompanied by every one one other accompanied by proclaim details concerning family members. They must excessively go tests to show they know how to use guns correctly. Those who go accompanied by every one one other accompanied by buy a weapon must excessively buy a exceptional locking system for it at the same time.

Passing those hurdles will permit a license holder to shoot at clay targets. Hunting requires an additional license.

The weapon used inside the assault on Abe was inside all likelihood a "craft-made" firearm, according to N.R. Jenzen-Jones, the director of Armament Research Services, a expert arms investigations firm.

He compared the weapon to a musket inside which the gunpowder is loaded separately from the bullet.

"Firearms legislation inside Japan is extremely restrictive, so I exist convinced by what we're seeing here, accompanied by what's inside all likelihood a muzzle-loading weapon, is not fair an try to circumvent the jurisdiction of firearms, nevertheless excessively the strict jurisdiction of ammunition inside Japan," he said.

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Associated Press Writer Jon Gambrell inside Lviv, Ukraine contributed to this report.

Jon Gambrell is on Twitter https://twitter.com/jongambrellAP

Yuri Kageyama is on Twitter https://twitter.com/yurikageyama

Japan's firm firearm laws add to shock over Abe's assassination

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