A group of sixteen university students made an attempt to unlawfully enter the Japanese Embassy located in central Seoul on Thursday. Their action was a protest against Japan’s decision to release radioactive water from the damaged Fukushima nuclear plant into the ocean. However, authorities quickly apprehended these students.
Japan’s move to discharge radioactive water into the Pacific Ocean, initiated by Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO), the operator of the tsunami-damaged nuclear facility, has sparked concerns among neighboring countries and local fishing communities. The first batch of treated radioactive water was reportedly released around 1 p.m., as reported by Yonhap news agency.
According to the police, the students gathered near the Japanese Embassy at approximately 1 p.m., chanting slogans against the release of radioactive water. Their attempt to access the embassy premises began on the eighth floor, where the consular section is situated. Access to the upper floors (ninth to eleventh) is only possible through the entrance on the eighth floor.
Law enforcement took the students into custody across four police stations, charging them with trespassing and violating the Assembly and Demonstration Act.
Subsequent to the apprehension of their peers, around 40 other students held a press conference in front of the building. These protesters displayed banners and posters on the building’s second and eighth floors, articulating their objections to the discharge of contaminated water.