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Ukrainians in Japan protest Russian invasion outside Shibuya Station

TOKYO -- At least 20 Ukrainians staged a demonstration against the Russian invasion of their homeland in front of JR Shibuya Station on Feb. 24, with protesters brandishing placards including "Stop Killing Ukrainian People" and calling for opposition to the war.

    Ukrainians protesting Russia's invasion of their home country are seen in Tokyo's Shibuya Ward on Feb. 24, 2022. (Mainichi/Ririko Maeda) =Click/tap photo for more images.

    One 33-year-old office worker at the 6 p.m. rally told the Mainichi Shimbun that her mother, a hospital cook in eastern Ukraine, had told her over social media that she'd been "woken up early in the morning by the sound of explosions."

    Because of the many patients at the hospital, her mother said she had to go to work even though many people were staying at home due to martial law. "All I can do is pray for the safety of my family," the office worker said.

    Meanwhile, a 26-year-old IT engineer who has been in Japan for five years broke down in tears when she heard that the Russian army had invaded her country. She was able to reach her parents in Ukraine by phone that evening, and was relieved to learn that there had been no explosions or gunfire near their house.

    "Peace is the most important thing, and we have to end this war as soon as possible," she said.

    (Japanese original by Shintaro Iguchi, Tokyo City News Department; Video by Naoki Watanabe, Tokyo Video Group)

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