Harassment over Coronavirus Restraints on Rise in Japan

Society

Tokyo, May 9 (Jiji Press)--There is a growing trend in Japan for people to harass those who do not comply with authorities' stay-at-home and business suspension requests amid the coronavirus epidemic.

Stores that remain open and vehicles with license plates from out of the prefecture are among targets of attacks by people called "jishuku keisatsu," or "restraint police."

Experts argue that such acts should not be permitted even if they are done based on a sense of justice.

In late April, a stranger posted a note on Maboroshido, a traditional Japanese sweets shop in the city of Yachiyo, Chiba Prefecture, to the east of Tokyo. The note demanded that Maboroshido suspend operations and not gather any children, despite the store having been closed since late March.

"I was very scared," Maboroshido owner Yasuko Murayama, 74, said. "I hope people would do things to lighten each other's spirits instead of something like this."

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press