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Japan Police Chief to Resign Over Abe Shooting Death

FILE - The vehicle carrying the body of former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe leaves Zojoji temple after his funeral in Tokyo on July 12, 2022.

Japan’s national police chief on Thursday said he will resign to take responsibility over the fatal shooting of former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at a campaign speech last month.

National Police Agency Chief Itaru Nakamura’s announcement came as his agency released a report on how it failed to save Abe’s life on July 8 when he was assassinated in Nara in western Japan.

The police report found holes in Abe’s police protection that allowed the alleged attacker to shoot him from behind.

Nakamura did not say when his resignation would be official.

The alleged gunman, Tetsuya Yamagami, was arrested at the scene and is currently under mental evaluation until late November. Yamagami told police that he targeted Abe because of the former leader’s link to the Unification Church, which he hated.

Abe’s family paid tribute to him in a private ritual Buddhist ritual Thursday marking the 49th day of his assassination.