Japan denies claims that prime minister Shinzo Abe is seriously ill

2020-08-05 23:13:53

Officials in Tokyo have played down suggestions that Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe is seriously ill after a news magazine reported that he vomited blood at his office on July 6 and cancelled his engagements for the rest of the day. Mr Abe, 65, attended the memorial ceremony marking the 75th anniversary of the atomic bomb attack on Hiroshima on Thursday and gave a brief address in which he called for the abolition of nuclear weapons, although it has been pointed out that he has not given any press conferences or attended parliamentary sessions for more than one month. The latest edition of the weekly news magazine Flash reported on the concerns about Mr Abe’s health, with the Mainichi newspaper also quoting people who had met with the prime minister in recent weeks as saying that he appeared pale and tired. Yoshihide Suga, the chief cabinet secretary, said the reports were inaccurate. “I have been seeing him every day and he has been devoted to his duties in a calm manner,” Mr Suga said in a press conference. “I do not think there are any problems with him at all.” There is, nevertheless, speculation in the halls of government that the prime minister is exhausted as he leads the campaign against coronavirus and, simultaneously, attempts to coordinate the response to severe flooding and landslides that affected much of the country in July.

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