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Shimane police to kick off martial arts classes for foreign tourists

An international student practices judo shoulder throws with police officers at Matsue Police Station in Matsue on Feb. 8, 2017. (Mainichi)

MATSUE -- In a move to spread martial arts and increase trust in Japanese police officers, Matsue Police Station here will open judo and kendo classes in March aimed at foreign tourists.

    The force is hoping the classes will also have one other benefit: improving police officers' English skills.

    Interested participants can apply for the about one-hour class of judo flips and kendo swings via the Shimane Prefectural Police website. There are also plans for an evening discussion between the instructors and participants by the prefecture's Lake Shinji, while watching the sunset.

    In preparation for the first class in March, Matsue Police Station has been carrying out a trial run with international students. Officers with black belts in martial arts have been trying their best to teach the foreign participants using English and gestures. But the question is: will the officers be able to win a "black belt in English" in return?

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