Japan Honors Former Prime Minister Abe With State Funeral

Japan honors former Prime Minister Abe with state funeral

Japan's longest-serving prime minister is being remembered for his life's work and his tragic death. Former Prime Minister Abe Shinzo was gunned down during an election campaign speech in July. Thousands gathered in Tokyo on Tuesday to mourn.

Members of the Imperial Family and lawmakers from across Japan joined the leaders of all three branches of government for the state funeral. About 700 foreign representatives also attended.

All stood in silent memory of the slain former prime minister before watching a compilation of Abe's comments on his nation's strengths and its future.

Kishida conveyed his condolences, saying, "Abe Shinzo was the one who worked harder than anyone else in the world to build and maintain peace within Japan, the region and across the globe and to maintain and promote an international order that values freedom, democracy, human rights and the rule of law."

Former Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide also gave a eulogy on behalf of Abe's friends. The two worked closely for years -- Abe as Japan's leader, and Suga as his Cabinet's voice.

Suga said, "You were determined to make Japan a country that could contribute to the world in all areas as a truly peace-loving nation. You had to commit and make decisions each and every day. But we never saw you without a smile on your face."