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S. Korean man dies after self-immolation at Japanese Embassy amid Seoul-Tokyo row

S. Korean man dies after self-immolation at Japanese Embassy amid Seoul-Tokyo row

An elderly South Korean man died on Friday after setting himself on fire outside the Japanese Embassy in Seoul amid a diplomatic dispute between the two states over wartime forced labor compensation.

The row has seen Tokyo restrict exports of chemicals vital to Seoul’s chip and smartphone industry.

The man in his 70s started a fire inside his vehicle, which was parked in front of the embassy building. He later died after being treated in hospital, officials say.

The man spoke to an acquaintance on the phone while driving to the Japanese Embassy from his home, and said that he was “setting fire” because of “his hostility against Japan,” a police officer at Seoul’s Jongno Police Station told AFP. “His family members have also told us that his father-in-law was one of the victims of Japan’s wartime slavery.”