Tag Archives: Civil rights

The Shinjuku West Gate Underground Plaza Protest Movement, 1969 and Today: Japan’s Invisible Civil Society and Phatic Silence in Urban Space

Shinjuku Station in Tokyo is commonly described as the busiest train station in the world, used by millions of passengers daily.(1) A key component of the station is the West Gate (or West Exit) area, which comprises a long street … Continue reading

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Shinjuku Station West Gate: Reclaiming Tokyo’s banned plaza as a political space

Over the years I have continued to gravitate back towards the Shinjuku Station West Gate (Nishiguchi) protests, which I believe to be one of the most important yet little-known social movements in Tokyo today. Every Saturday from 5pm to 7pm, … Continue reading

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Activists alarmed by Shinjuku ward move to restrict parks for protests

Shinjuku ward in Tokyo revealed a plan on 27 June to reduce the number of parks that demonstrations can use from the current four to just one. The move was initiated as a move to combat hate speech rallies, which … Continue reading

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Activists denounce Tokyo Anti-Nuisance Ordinance revision as curbing right to protest

The Tokyo Metropolitan Assembly has passed an update to the Tokyo Anti-Nuisance Ordinance that, activists say, will potentially muzzle protests and free speech, and strengthen police powers over civil liberties. The revision, which was voted through on 29 March and … Continue reading

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Japanese activists denounce increased police oppression after arrest for refusing stop and frisk

Although Japan can appear very safe and there is undeniably little petty crime, the calm exterior masks two key conditions: that Yakuza control over sections of society is rampant and it is likely in part this network of organised crime … Continue reading

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