Thousands of militant students fought hand-to-hand with police in Tokyo on Monday (28 April) in demonstrations against the United States occupation of Okinawa.
Thousands of militant students fought hand-to-hand with police in Tokyo on Monday (28 April) in demonstrations against the United States occupation of Okinawa. More than 950 students were arrested and about 40 police injured. The riots coincided with the 17th anniversary of the occupation of the island by U.S. troops in the last war.
Shouting anti-American slogans, the students marched through the streets of the capital while other columns weaved along railway lines. Many arrived by train and at Tokyo's Central station about 1500 students, wearing re-inforced helmets and wielding clubs, disrupted train operation. As their numbers swelled minute by minute, the group began trekking toward Shimbashi station along the elevated tracks.
After being dispersed from railway tracks by police, the students made their way to the downtown Yurakucho area. The police pursued them and forced them into to Ginza Street - one of the main shopping areas in Tokyo.
Mingling with several thousands pedestrians, the students staged running battles with police, keeping the shopping area in chaos until midnight.
Mobs attacked police boxes and overturned a car setting light to it Stones and petrol bombs were thrown at the police protected by riot shields. They in turn answered with tear gas and a water cannon.
The day had started peacefully with 50,000 people at ??? Park.
The students have promised a year of civil disobedience until the San Francisco Peace Treaty annexing Okinawa to the United States is reviewed in 1970.