Prince William 'deeply saddened' as he reacts to Shinzo Abe's death

The royal penned an emotional statement

The Duke of Cambridge penned a heartfelt tribute to Japan's former Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, following his tragic assassination on Friday.

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Taking to his Twitter account, the dad-of-three expressed his heartbreak, writing: "I'm deeply saddened to learn of the death of Japan’s former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. A true statesman and committed leader."

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Speaking of his personal connection, Prince William added: "I won't forget the warmth and generosity he extended to me during my visit to Japan in 2015. My thoughts are with his family and the people of Japan W."

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The Duke's followers shared their condolences, with one writing: "People in Japan are saddened by this tragedy and huge loss. Thank you so much for your kind message."

Prince William penned a heartfelt statement

Equally moved, another penned: "I was shocked when I heard the news this morning… such a big tragedy! May Mr Abe rest in peace."

Prince William's emotive message comes after the Queen shared her own statement earlier today. "My family and I were deeply saddened to hear the news of the sudden and tragic death of former Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe," penned the 96-year-old monarch.

"I have fond memories of meeting Mr Abe and his wife during their visit to the United Kingdom in 2016," she added.

The royal met Shinzo Abe during his 2015 visit to Japan

"His love for Japan, and his desire to forge ever-closer bonds with the United Kingdom, were clear."

Signing off with a personal touch, the Queen finished her letter by writing: "Elizabeth R."

The former prime minister died after being shot on Friday morning while giving a campaign speech for an upcoming national election.

The suspect, Tetsuya Yamagami, reportedly shot Shinzo from behind minutes after he kicked off his speech in Nara, western Japan. Despite doctors attempting to save him with emergency treatment, the 67-year-old's heart stopped beating.

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