Kojima Productions has warned that it is willing to take legal action against those who are spreading fake news and rumors about how Hideo Kojima was allegedly involved with this week’s assassination of Shinzo Abe, Japan’s longest-serving Prime Minister.
Abe was killed by a man with a homemade gun in the city of Nara on Friday, a shocking event for a country that is known for having one of the world’s lowest rates of gun crime due to its strict firearm laws.
Shortly after the event, Kojima became linked to the ordeal after numerous social media users, including French politician Damien Rieu, began retweeting images that suggested the game designer had something to do with the assassination attempt. Things became worse after a news station in Greece failed to do its research and aired an image of Kojima with a Soviet ushanka as part of a report that suggested he was the assassin.
“Tetsuya [Yamagami] has confessed to his actions to the police, admitting that he wanted Abe dead because he was disappointed and upset with him,” a translation of the broadcast that features Kojima reads. “The police have learned that he [the culprit] had served in the Navy Special Forces and taught a unit in Medical School on Physiotherapy for dementia patients. He was passionate about Che Guevara.”
Yamagami, 41, admitted to shooting Abe on Friday after being arrested on the scene. He told investigators that he “holds a hatred toward a certain group that he thought Abe was linked to,” although police have not named the group. Authorities who searched his apartment have found several handmade, pistol-like weapons.
#KojimaProductions strongly condemns the spread of fake news and rumors that convey false information. We do not tolerate such libel and will consider taking legal action in some cases. pic.twitter.com/fDi0FR9kB0— KOJIMA PRODUCTIONS (Eng) (@KojiPro2015_EN) July 9, 2022
It appears that some online—as well as this news broadcast—are connecting the killer to Che Guevara based entirely on one of the photos of Kojima, which shows him standing next to an image of the famous Cuban revolutionary leader.
And to be clear: No, Kojima isn’t the assassin, and the only reason this has become a thing is because of racists joking online that all Japanese people look the same. A horrible example of how shitty, offensive humor can have real-world consequences.
Source: Kojima Productions