19 Aug 2012

Chinese protesters burn Japanese flags, overturn cars

Anti-Japanese protesters protest in Chinese cities after activists unfurled Japanese flags on a disputed island in the East China Sea claimed by both Tokyo and Beijing.

Anti-Japanese protesters demonstrated in Chinese cities on Sunday sparked by the unfurling of Japanese flags on a island in the East China Sea claimed by both Tokyo and Beijing.

While Xinhua state news said protests involved fewer than 200 people in several Chinese cities, an image posted online – reportedly from Chengdu, in China’s interior – appeared to show tens of thousands of protesters.

One photograph showed a handwritten sign on an electronics stores saying it would no longer sell Japanese products. Video and photos also showed demonstrators attacking sushi restaurants and overturning Japanese-made cars.

“Defend the Diaoyu Islands to the death,” one banner said, while another read: “Even if China is covered with graves, we must kill all Japanese.”

Island dispute

Demonstrators raising the Chinese national flag marched to Shanghai’s Japanese consulate to demand that Japan leave the islands called Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China.

A Hong Kong broadcaster showed protesters chanting anti-Japan slogans and throwing their fists in the air. ” I say that we overthrow the small country of Japan,” one of the Chinese protesters said.

More than 100 protesters gathered near the Japanese consulate in the southern city of Guangzhou urging the Japan to leave the islands, Xinhua news agency reported.

Flag burning

Many set Japanese flags made of paper on fire or marched in the streets carrying anti-Japan slogans.

Tension grew last week after seven Chinese activists slipped past Japan’s Coast Guard to land on one of the uninhabited isles and raise a Chinese flag. They were deported on Friday.