American Jewish Committee is shocked and deeply saddened by the assassination of Abe Shinzo. We join Japan in mourning his senseless death. The world has lost one of its most distinguished statesmen.

Throughout his tenure as Japan’s longest-serving prime minister, Abe was an unstinting ally to the Jewish people and Israel. As prime minister, he visited Israel and encouraged Japanese investment and business ties, increasing investment from $20 million when he was elected in 2012 to over $6 billion in 2019.

When Abe addressed the AJC Global Forum in 2017, he spoke of the importance of strengthening Japan’s ties to the Jewish people. He demonstrated this in his leadership of Japan’s foreign policy and his friendship with AJC and with Israel. It is why AJC presented him in 2019 with our Light Unto the Nations Award in Tokyo, AJC’s highest honor given to world leaders who defend democratic values and show friendship to the Jewish people. Indeed, we have lost a dear friend.

His enduring commitment to the U.S.-Japan relationship and to exhibiting leadership in the vital Indo-Pacific region was nothing short of extraordinary.

Abe’s remarkable legacy will continue to shine bright. May his memory be a blessing.

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