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Man nearly severs finger in protest of Japan's claims to Dokdo

April 21, 2011 - 14:59 By 이우영

A South Korean man nearly cut off his finger and created a commotion in front of the Japanese embassy in Seoul Thursday, protesting against Tokyo's renewed territorial claims to South Korea's easternmost islets of Dokdo, police said.

The 47-year-old man, identified only by his surname Choi, appeared from behind a building near the embassy with his left pinky almost severed and demanded the Japanese Ambassador to South Korea Masatoshi Muto apologize, the police said.

South Korea has been bolstering efforts to demonstrate its control over Dokdo after Japan last month authorized a set of new school textbooks laying claims to the rocky outcroppings in the East Sea. The South Korean government is pushing to build a maritime science base off the islets, while lawmakers have passed a resolution condemning Japan for the recent move.

Police said Choi also held a weapon up against his neck before he was persuaded to go to a nearby hospital.

On a leaflet made for passers-by, Choi wrote, "Japan is arguing that Dokdo is its territory, as if it isn't enough to teach distorted history. Japan should stop its atrocities and wake up."

(Yonhap News)

<한글 기사>

`독도는 우리땅' 日대사관앞 자해소동

21일 오전 11시43분께 서울 종로구 중학동 주한 일본대사관 앞에서 최모(47)씨가 손가락을 흉기로 베는 등 자해 소동을 벌였다.

대사관 경비를 서고 있던 기동대원의 신고로 출동한 경찰에 따르면 최씨는 왼쪽 새끼손가락이 거의 절단된 채로 "일본 대사는 사과하라"고 외치며 대사관 인근 건물 뒤에서 나타난 뒤 1~2분간 목에 흉기를 대고 자해 소동을 벌였다.

최씨는 경찰의 설득 끝에 30여분 뒤 인근 병원으로 이송됐다.

그는 행인들에게 나눠주려던 A4용지 1장 분량의 유인물에서 "일본은 역사를 왜곡해 엉터리로 가르치는 것도 모자라 독도가 자기 땅이라고 우기고 있다"며 "일본은 만행을 중단하고 각성하라"고 주장했다.