• Kyodo


A Japanese woman severely wounded in a shooting that killed her husband on their honeymoon in Guayaquil, Ecuador, expressed her sorrow Tuesday.

“I only feel grief after my beloved husband was killed,” Mariko Hitomi, 27, said in tears in an exclusive interview with Kyodo News at a local hospital.

She spoke to a media outlet for the first time since the couple were attacked in a taxi by two men on the night of Dec. 28, on condition that no photography or recording of any kind be allowed.

Her 30-year-old husband, Tetsuo, died after being shot in the chest, while she was shot in the stomach and the right leg.

“I still can’t walk, and I don’t know when I can go home,” she said, with her mother at her bedside.

She is making good progress after surgery and is expected to be out of the hospital as early as Thursday, according to her doctor, who added that it will take her time to heal from the psychological damage.

Hitomi declined to talk about the incident, saying, “I have been told by prosecutors not to tell anyone.”

The couple left on their honeymoon soon after their wedding ceremony in Japan on Dec. 22. They stopped in Panama before arriving in the largest city in Ecuador, and were planning to visit the Galapagos Islands, she said.

In a statement separately issued through a person close to her, Hitomi said, “I want to go back to Japan and want to have the suspects arrested as soon as possible.”

Last Sunday, Ecuador’s interior minister, Jose Serrano, said key suspects have emerged in the shooting and indicated they may be arrested in a few days.

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