Japan court recognizes anti-foreigner group action as 'racist and illegal'

Source:Xinhua Published: 2013-10-7 16:51:58

A local court in the western Japanese city of Kyoto ruled on Monday that a series of propaganda rallies against Korean people publicly staged near a foreign school by some nationalist groups are "racist" attacks and "illegal", local press reported.

The court ordered the anti-foreigner groups to pay 12 million yen (about 123,000 US dollars) in compensation for the school managed by residents from the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), Nippon Hoso Kyokai (NHK), Japan's public broadcaster, reported the decision.

It said the extremists, including an emerging nationalist group whose stated goal is the abolition of some privileges awarded to local residents holding South Korean or DPRK citizenship and Special Foreign Resident status, conducted repeated demonstration marches between 2009 and 2010.

During these gatherings, they used megaphones and engaged in threatening speech near a Korean school located in southern Kyoto.

The district court stated their speech and other related activities against the foreign residents are behavior that indisputably breaches the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, thus confirming their illegality.

In addition to ordering the groups to promptly compensate the victims, the judge also ordered a ban on the extremists staging any protest near the school, rejecting their argument that they were exercising their freedom of speech under the Constitution.

The NHK report cited lawyers as saying that Monday's judgment marks the first case in Japanese juridical history to recognize " hate speech" as a crime.

Posted in: Asia-Pacific

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