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Russians among protesters in front of embassy in Tokyo after invasion of Ukraine

TOKYO -- People protested against Russia in front of its Tokyo embassy on Feb. 24 over the country's invasion of Ukraine.

    Japan in Tokyo's Minato Ward on Feb. 24, 2022. (Mainichi/Ririko Maeda)

    At around 3 p.m. on the day, a Russian man in his 30s showed up in front of the Embassy of Russia in Japan in Tokyo's Minato Ward, holding a placard that read, "Stop war in Ukraine." The man, a programmer living in Tokyo, said that he learned about the Ukraine invasion in the news, and explained the reason he took such action as, "We have to stop a war."

    He said that his friends live in the Ukraine capital Kiev and angrily added, "I contacted them on social media, and they told me they would evacuate. The invasion is inconceivable. I'm ashamed of my country."

    Meanwhile, a group of three friends -- Russian, Japanese and Ukrainian -- came to the embassy at around 4:30 p.m. and raised a placard with a message written in Russian saying, "We are against a war with Ukraine."

    A member in the group, a 21-year-old Ukrainian woman living in Tokyo, said that she had received messages from her friends in the country via social media, including, "I heard a loud noise, and the walls shook," and, "I'm preparing to evacuate."

    Her parents and a younger sister are still living in Kiev. "Though I heard that they've evacuated to a safe place, I'm worried," she said. "I feel weak at the knees because I'm really scared, and it's hard to even watch the news now. I want Russia to stop conducting this war at any rate."

    (Japanese original by Richi Tanaka, Tokyo City News Department; Video by Naoki Watanabe, Tokyo Video Group)

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