Japanese police ‘racially profiling’ Americans, US embassy claims
The US Embassy in Tokyo has issued an alert warning Americans in Japan to carry identification, after reports of expatriates being racially profiled by police and detained.
In a warning to US citizens on Sunday, the US Embassy in Tokyo claimed to have “received reports of foreigners [being] stopped and searched by Japanese police in suspected racial profiling incidents.”
The U.S. Embassy has received reports of foreigners stopped and searched by Japanese police in suspected racial profiling incidents. Several were detained, questioned, and searched. U.S. citizens should carry proof of immigration and request consular notification if detained. pic.twitter.com/a8BkAU7eCR— U.S. Embassy Tokyo, ACS (@ACSTokyo) December 5, 2021
“Several were detained, questioned, and searched,” the embassy claimed, advising Americans to “carry proof of immigration and request consular notification if detained.”
The alert prompted several Americans to share their own experiences with the police in Japan, with many reporting incidents in which they had been profiled as a foreigner and stopped.
this isn’t new; i’ve been stopped several times (usually at train stations and airports); what’s new about it is the US embassy calling them out on it— Christopher Webb (@chishiki) December 5, 2021
Absolutely true. Used to live in Japan. And while I wasn’t personally stopped, all my long-term expat friends were. You learn to live with it, they say, but it was annoying nonetheless.— Baron Samedi (@baron_samedi__) December 6, 2021
“So many of my friends have been racially profiled for so much as walking down the street at night… hoping this tweet doesn’t signal an increase in that kind of heinous activity,” tweeted one American in Tokyo, while another questioned, “How is this an alert? I've been here a decade [and] it happens all the time.”
Foreign residents of Japan are required to register with the authorities and must always carry identification showing their residency status to avoid penalties.