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PM Lee attends state funeral of former Japanese PM Shinzo Abe

SINGAPORE — Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong attended the state funeral of Japan's former prime minister Shinzo Abe in Tokyo on Tuesday (Sept 27).

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and his wife Ho Ching (centre) at the state funeral of former Japanese premier Shinzo Abe in Tokyo on Sept 27, 2022.

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and his wife Ho Ching (centre) at the state funeral of former Japanese premier Shinzo Abe in Tokyo on Sept 27, 2022.

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SINGAPORE — Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong attended the state funeral of Japan's former prime minister Shinzo Abe in Tokyo on Tuesday (Sept 27).

In a Facebook post on Tuesday, Mr Lee described Abe as a “close friend of Singapore” who “worked hard to maintain the close ties between our countries”. 

Mr Lee added that he also conveyed his deepest condolences to Mrs Akie Abe, the widow of the late ex-premier.

“In this time of grief, we remember him by continuing that good work,” Mr Lee wrote in the post.

Abe, who served as prime minister from 2006 to 2007 and again from 2012 to 2020, died in hospital after being shot while he was giving a speech for a political campaign event on a street in the city of Nara on July 8.

He was 67.

Some 4,300 people, including world leaders such as United States Vice-President Kamala Harris and Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India, attended the state funeral at the Budokan arena in central Tokyo under tight security.

Thousands of mourners had laid flowers, television showed, at designated spots near the venue from early morning to pay their last respects, with more waiting in three-hour-long queues.

Mr Lee was accompanied by his wife Ho Ching for the event.

On Tuesday, Mr Lee also met with his Japanese counterpart Fumio Kishida.

This is the third in-person meeting they have had in five months, Singapore's Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) said in a statement.

During the meeting, the two prime ministers reaffirmed the "close and longstanding ties" between both countries and discussed existing cooperation in the fields of digitalisation, sustainability, energy and multilateral trade.

MFA added that both leaders also had "a fruitful discussion" on regional and global developments.

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Shinzo Abe Lee Hsien Loong Japan Funeral death MFA

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