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SECURITY > Okinawa

Okinawa leader upset about derogatory remarks made by riot policemen

  • October 20, 2016
  • , Asahi
  • JMH Summary

Most papers reported that two riot policemen dispatched from Osaka hurled abusive epithets at base opponents in Okinawa. They called activists protesting against the helipad construction at the Northern Training Area (NTA) on Tuesday: “Idiots. Dojin,” (a derogatory term meaning “native”) and “Shinajin,” (a derogatory reference to Chinese). According to Asahi, several hundred riot policemen from Osaka, Tokyo, and four other prefectures have been mobilized to maintain safety around the NTA. Okinawa Governor Onaga was enraged by the discriminatory language, telling the press yesterday: “This is unforgivable. They completely lack respect for local residents.” CCS Suga expressed regret by saying that the language was completely inappropriate. The National Police Agency on Wednesday instructed prefectural police across the nation to conduct thorough ethical education for police. Tokyo Shimbun said the riot police deployed around the NTA have used offensive language in referring to protestors, noting that the latest episodes represented deep-seated prejudice held against Okinawa among some police officials. The daily denounced the police, who are tasked with cracking down on hate speech, for “running amok.”   


Meanwhile, several papers wrote that Osaka Governor Matsui, who apparently viewed the scenes captured on video that were posted on YouTube, commented on the controversy on his Twitter account by saying: “Admittedly, the expressions are inappropriate. However, I’ve learned that Osaka policemen were doing their utmost to carry out their duties faithfully. Thank you for your work away from home.” This tweet has drawn criticism.

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