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Japan

Tokyo Olympic Protest: Woman Tries To Extinguish Torch With Squirt Gun

Many Japanese want to Games cancelled because of COVID risks.

Tokyo Olympic Protest: Woman Tries To Extinguish Torch With Squirt Gun
Genevieve Mansfield

Less than three weeks from the start of the Tokyo Summer Olympics, much of the Japanese public continues to demand the Games be cancelled because of the risks associated with COVID-19.

After weeks of street protests and petitions, Kayoko Takahashi found a creative way to demonstrate her disapproval: trying to extinguish the Olympic flame with a squirt gun.

Japanese daily Asahi Shimbun reported that the Olympic torch, which is being symbolically carried across the nation in the lead-up to the Games, passed through the Ibaraki prefecture near Takahashi's home on Sunday. A video shows the 53-year-old raising the plastic toy gun and taking aim at the flame, which was being carried by an elderly man.

Police immediately arrested Takahashi, fearing she may have sprayed another liquid besides water onto the flame.

"I am against the Olympics. Stop the Olympics," Takahashi can be heard saying after spraying toward the torch. For the record: The runner kept going, and the flame kept burning. Opening Ceremonies are set for July 23.

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