In a rare gesture, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, US President Joe Biden and Australian PM Anthony Albanese issued a joint statement on Saturday paying rich tributes to Japanese leader Shinzo Abe and recalled his key role in setting up of the Quad and pushing for a free and open Indo-Pacific.
Abe, the 67-year-old former Japanese prime minister, died after being shot while giving a campaign speech in the southern Japanese city of Nara on Friday morning.
Modi, Biden and Albanese said Abe was a “transformative leader” for Japan and worked tirelessly to advance a shared vision for a free and open Indo-Pacific. The Quad comprised India, the US, Japan and Australia.
“We, the leaders of Australia, India, and the United States, are shocked at the tragic assassination of former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe,” the joint statement of the leaders released here by the Ministry of External Affairs said.
“Prime Minister Abe was a transformative leader for Japan and for Japanese relations with each one of our countries. He also played a formative role in the founding of the Quad partnership, and worked tirelessly to advance a shared vision for a free and open Indo-Pacific,” they said.
Modi, Biden and Albanese said they will honour Abe’s memory by “redoubling our work” towards a peaceful and prosperous Indo-Pacific region.
“Our hearts are with the people of Japan — and Prime Minister Kishida –in this moment of grief. We will honour Prime Minister Abe’s memory by redoubling our work towards a peaceful and prosperous region,” they said.
Abe, the grandson of former prime minister Nobusuke Kishi, played a pivotal role in shaping the broad contours of the Quad or Quadrilateral coalition.