The game studio of Hideo Kojima has responded to false allegations that were published on social media and by news organisations and claimed Kojima was Shinzo Abe’s killer. Kojima Productions asserts in a tweet that it will “explore taking legal action in some circumstances” and “strongly condemns the distribution of fake news and rumours that communicate misleading information.”
Abe was fatally murdered on Friday while making a speech at a political gathering. Tetsuya Yamagami, 41, was the shooter who was apprehended by police at the scene. A 4chan troll produced a racist graphic linking Kojima’s face to that of the shooter shortly after the incident (via PCGamer). Three further images of Kojima were posted in response to the original post by another user, showing the creator of Metal Gear and Death Stranding wearing a Soviet cap and sitting alongside portraits of the Argentine revolutionary Che Guevara.
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Later, the Japanese soccer player Keisuke Honda was identified as the offender in a now-deleted “satirical” post by French comedian Georges Jordito that included these photographs. But Damien Rieu, a far-right French politician linked to the nationalism movement in that nation, took it seriously and tweeted Kojima photographs with the caption, “The far-left kills.” According to Vice, Greek and Iranian news organisations picked up the images and unintentionally included them in their report of the incident.
Using images of Hideo Kojima sporting a Soviet ushanka, a Joker t-shirt, and posing next to a portrait of Che Guevara, Greek news outlets have claimed that he was Shinzo Abe’s killer. pic.twitter.com/JiwZKtA7pJ After taking down his tweet, Rieu wrote, “I stupidly took a joke for information,” in a letter of apologies to Kojima. The Iranian publication has likewise updated the image it used in its report, while the Greek media that showed a part with a Kojima image has removed it from YouTube.
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