Japan Ex-Prime Minister Shinzo Abe shot during a speech

Shinzo Abe is in “cardio-respiratory arrest” after collapsing during a speech, with initial reports saying gunshots were heard shortly before he fell to the ground.

Japan’s public broadcaster NHK said Abe, the country’s longest-serving prime minister until his resignation in 2020

NHK said a man in his 40s was taken into custody but did not give further details

A witness to the attack told broadcasters that the first shot caused Abe to stumble backward, and that he fell to the ground after the second shot.

Amateur video footage showed Abe’s aides chasing smoke behind him. The clip does not show the moment he fell.

The suspected gunmen did not attempt to flee and were arrested at the scene.

Abe, who was flown to the hospital by helicopter, was in Nara city to deliver a campaign speech ahead of Sunday’s upper house election.

Japan Ex-Prime Minister Shinzo Abe left his post in 2020 for health reasons.

In his resignation speech, Abe said he did not want his illness to interfere with decision-making and apologized to the Japanese people for failing to complete his term.