. Hundreds of onlookers watched as the man set himself ablaze on the bridge
. He suffered serious burns before being rescued by emergency workers
. The action was in protest against changes to Japan’s defence policy
. The country wants to be more assertive in international security matters
By Steve Hopkins
A man set himself on fire at Tokyo’s busy Shinjuku railway station on Sunday in what appears to be a rare violent political protest.
The man, who appeared to be in his 50s or 60s, was taken to hospital after suffering serious injuries, said Daiji Kubota, an officer at the Shinjuku police station. He said the man’s identity and the reason for the self-immolation was under investigation.
Footage of the incident on Twitter and other social media showed a man wearing a suit and tie sitting on a small mat along the metal framework above a pedestrian walkway with two plastic bottles of what looked like gasoline beside him.
Witnesses were quoted as saying the man spoke through a megaphone to protest the government’s moves to change Japan’s defence policy.
He then doused himself with gasoline and set himself alight as hundreds of people watched from below and from nearby buildings…