Former Japan Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe's shock assassination has sparked all kinds of wild conspiracy theories involving World War 3 fears.
The 67-year-old who was fatally shot in the back and neck as he gave a speech in the Japanese city of Nara ahead of elections this Sunday (July 10).
Despite the alleged killer telling police he gunned down Mr Abe because he was "dissatisfied" with him, the tin foil hat brigade has leapt to conclusions, claiming a larger force is at play.
READ MORE: Ex-Japan PM Shinzo Abe shot dead by 'navy vet with homemade gun' in front of crowd
Medics tried to resuscitate Mr Abe who bled 'profusely' for hours before confirming his death in the hospital he was airlifted to soon after the shooting at around 11:30am local time (3:30am UK time) on Friday.
Horrified witnesses claim the alleged shooter, Tetsuya Yamagami, 41, crept up to just a few metres behind Mr Abe before firing at his neck and back, causing him to collapse to the ground.
As the former navy veteran made a run for it, Mr Abe's security squad chased him down and were pictured launching into a heroic partnered tackle, pulling at his ankle and grappling hold of his torso.
Much remains unclear about the shooter's motive beyond his 'dissatisfaction' comment but conspiracy theorists have offered their own ideas on Twitter, suggesting it was orchestrated by the USA.
One skeptical individual tweeted: "Call me a paranoid conspiracy theory cynic but I just hope there's no black hands of Washington somewhere involved in the shooting of former PM of Japan Shinzo Abe. Its my first reaction these days based upon history.
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"Meaning the USA implicating China or Russia in the shooting to crystalize Japanese / western antagonism against those nations."
Another Twitter user agreed, replying: "I think you are right to always put the CIA or some arms-length splinter cell of the US deep state on the list of suspects.
"The US national security state has been out of control for most of its history since being formed after WW2 to create beneficial chaos in peace as in war."
Popular 'Donald Trump endorsed' American author Nick Adams controversially linked the shooting to the former US President.
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He said: "President Trump’s allies are under attack. First Rudy Giuliani, now Shinzo Abe. The radical left will stop at nothing to ensure 45 doesn't become 47. Pray for Shinzo Abe."
Unsurprisingly Adams' "hot take" left some social media users baffled while being mocked by others.
One prankster drew a tenuous link between the shooting and the notorious assassination of Abraham Lincoln in the 19th century.
They commented on the tragedy: "Shinzo Abe's last name is the same as Abe Lincolns first name. Both were shot. Coincidence? I don't think so."
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World War Three fears have been shut down by a Twitter user who admits to being "repulsed" by conspiracy theories.
They said: "I am utterly repulsed by Filipino people commenting 'WW3 is waving' after the shooting of Shinzo Abe. Clearly, you've been consuming a ton of conspiracy theories (and if I may say, disinformation even) to end up with such a prediction."
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It has even been suggested China had a role to play. One theorist offered: "Quite possibly he could’ve had Chinese government connections; as Abe is a very powerful politician who wants Japan to have a military and seeing as Japan having a military is one of the greatest threats to the CCP; it’s possible that they would’ve wanted someone like Abe dead."
Someone else said: "I’m not really one for conspiracy theories but Boris Johnson resigning, Russia acting even more suspicious than usual, and Shinzo Abe being shot in one single day got me on the verge of investing in some tin foil."
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