Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese paid tribute to former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who was fatally shot on Friday.
Mr Albanian said Australia has “lost a real friend” in Mr Abe.
“Mr. Abe faced all his challenges with a strong character and an unbending determination,” Mr Albanese said at a news conference on Saturday.
“He didn’t shrink, he didn’t weaken. And that’s the cruel paradox of the tragedy that unfolded yesterday.
Mr Albanese said Mr Abe “instinctively understood the values Australia and Japan share in democracy and human rights and the shared interest we have in strengthening the global rules-based order”.
“His vision of a free and open Indo-Pacific had a profound effect on regional and global security and informed the Quad,” he said.
“Japan has lost a true patriot and a true leader, and Australia has lost a true friend.”
Mr Albanian previously had a with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Joe Biden paying tribute to Mr Abe.
He described Friday’s shooting as an act of “extreme cowardice” and expressed his condolences to the Japanese people.
“The precious democracy you have built is stronger than this. The values we share and that hold our societies together are stronger than this. A hand raised by force can never overcome what so many hands have built in peace “, he said. said.
“To the wider Japanese family, your Australian friends share in your sorrow and we share in your sorrow. We stand with you in this time of sorrow.”
Albanian said flags in Australia will be flown at half-mast on the day of Mr Abe’s funeral.
We must ‘cherish’ democracy: Anthony Albanese
Albanian spoke of the need to “cherish” democracy after the “senseless violence” of Mr Abe’s murder.
“We need to nurture that democracy and part of nurturing that democracy is enabling that interaction that we have in this amazing country of Australia where people in high positions can walk the streets, attend events, both professionally and personally. and feel that they are safe from this kind of senseless violence – this crime, this act of terrorism that we have seen tragically unfold in Japan,” he said.
Abe was shot during a campaign rally on Friday and later died in hospital.
A 41-year-old has been arrested and charged with the murder of the former Japanese prime minister.
Mr Albanese also spoke about his personal safety, saying there were “risks” with his recent trip to Ukraine, but that Australia “must do our business”.
“I have absolute confidence in the people who look after myself and others in high positions, but as someone who recently went to Ukraine, not only with the personal protection of the AFP, but also with members of our special forces… unbelievable work, but they also take a risk,” he said.
“I was very clear during that visit that there were some risks involved, very clear. But we have to do our job in this country.”