Japan once expanded its territory to the areas 1 ~ 7 by aggression. It was thanks to its oceanic conditions that it was easy to reach these regions directly by short voyage. The imperialist project was called the Great East Asia Co-prosperity Sphere, with the guise of a common wealth centered in Japan.
Meanwhile, the state ideology of Japan consistently represented the country as an insular nation, stressing the natural and necessary territoriality and nationhood. As already evident, however, Japan is not an insular but an archipelago, attached to the Asian continent. As the cultural and racial facts prove, it is not pure but heterogeneous entity. In terms of the state’s ambition as well, it sought to annex the entire Asia as a military might in the past and today it seeks to push various free trade agreements as an economic might.
Table of Contents
① What is G8？
② What is going on in Japan
③ Actions in the run-up
① What is G8 ?: General problems
World population: ca. 6.7 Billion People
G8 countries: ca. 850 Million people
The eight nations make up only 14% of the world
However decisions made at these summits dictate the course of the rest of the world.
Monopoly of the course of the world on the initiative of the 8 biggest countries
And now more than ever, the evidence is stark that decisions that these nations have made have brought nothing but worsening poverty, increasing insecurity, deepening indebtedness, militarization and wars and now they are pushing for market based solutions to climate change which threaten to endanger the future of the planet.
And what else do the G8 countries do?
They do nearly 90 % of all global weapons trade.
They produce 47% of the global CO² emissions.
They control most “Third World” debt.
80% of medical patents are made from G8 countries, including patents for many AIDS drugs.
They acount for 60% of global military expenses.
and so on….
Some examples of the G8 problematics are:
(1) The eight nations make up only 14% of the world population, and the institution of the G8 has no authentic ground in the sense of International Law. Nonetheless the G8 leaders tacitly assume the rights to determine the global affairs.
(2) By controlling the World Bank, IMF, WTO, and FTA, the G8 represent the financial elites and the multi-national corporations of the advanced nations, that is, the neo-liberalism.
(3) The G8 consistently treat favorably the mammoth agri-business, the very threat to the traditional agriculture and farming communities, and to the entire humanity, with their genetic engineering for profit.
(4) Today two thousand eight hundred million people are living with less than $2 dollars a day, and eight hundred million people are suffering from hunger. The G8’s measure to this situation is pushing the free trade.
(5) The G8 promise cancellation of the accumulating debts of the developing nations, while what they are really pushing is the structural adjustment policy.
(6) The G8 are responsible for half of the planetary emission of carbon dioxide. Meanwhile they are encouraging nuclear power generation.
(7) For the sake of profit making of the mammoth enterprises, the G8 make the labor market more and more flexible and spreading the precarious conditions of the employment.
(8) In Africa, AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis are spreading, but the patients are not getting sufficient treatment, thanks to the G8 that monopolize 80% of the medicinal licenses.
(9) The G8 nations are exporters of 90% of all the weapons in the world. 60% of all the military spending is theirs.
Japan’s relation to the G8
Japan is the only Asian representative of the G8
Japan is the main promoter of the neo-liberalist reconstruction of Asia
In its imperialist past, Japan consistently approached Asia with aggression
especially toward China and Korea.
The ambition of annexing these countries was lost in an unconditional surrender.
In the post-war period, as it gained economic power it is forgetting its war crimes and seeking to be a full armed, ‘adult nation-state’ these days, especially by on-going attempts to amend Article 9. Today we are still struggling vis-a`-vis the issues deriving from the imperialist history: citizenship of resident Koreans, compensation for the comfort women, governmental worshipping of the war sanctifying Yasukuni Shrine, and independence of Okinawa.
Beginning from the 1980s, immigrant workers have been increasing in Japan, and their rights have been unjustly ignored. At the same time it behaves as the main promoter of a neo-liberalist reconstruction of Asia, forcing weaker nations to accept the free trade agreement, as evident in JPEPA (Japan-Philippines Economic Partnership Agreement).
(Here we might want to have analyses of the particularities of today’s Japan as a new society of life control. Maybe our future task?)
What's going on in Japan
G8 Summit 2000 Okinawa、Anti-war Struggle in Japan、Precarity in Japan、Homelessness in Japan、Japanese Anti-globalization movements、Anti-fa actions in Japan、Asian anti-globalization movements
G8 Summit 2000 Okinawa
Siege of base action
a human chain of 27,000 people surrounded kadena base in okinawa, the largest u.s. air force base in the far east. the siege lasted for a few hours. the main intention (or theme) of the siege was obviously anti-base. only 2 weeks before this action (and the G8), there were a series of crimes, including rape and a hit-and-run incident comitted by u.s. soldiers, which boosted the number of participants to this anti-base action.
Total amount of costs sor the summit: US$ 750 Million
alternative summits were held at the time of G8 Okinawa, based on 5 main topics, anti-base, women, environment, debt cancellation and labor. the top two conferences that attracted the most people were Jubilee 2000 (debt cancellation) and International women's conference. For the international women's conference, there were about 40 participants from abroad, from countries such as south korea, u.s.a., puerto rico, the phillipines, etc. As for the Jubilee 2000 conference, big NGOs that submit policy proposals were present.
there has been a slight decline in this movement since jubilee 2000, but recently, the overall representative of a network called CADTM (Committee for the Abolition of Third World Debt) and its French representative visited Japan to coordinate jubilee kyushu (south islands of japan) with attac japan, so it's fair to say there is still a movement going on.
- tide of east asian solidarity
Through the alternative summit, we succeeded in establishing relationships with some Asian NGOs and social movements. For example, since this period, there was much focus beginning to be put on the global south, and we built a network of the anti US base campaign in Asia. So we can say that some engagements with the overseas organizasions worked well. And it lead up to the global justice movements centered around the World Social Forum in Japan and Asian countries.
March of the Homeless from Tokyo to G8 Okinawa
On June 24, 2000, a total of 24 homeless people and supporters began their march towards Okinawa from Tokyo, making stops at Nagoya and Osaka (2 major cities) on their way, to converge with fellow homeless. This was the March of the homeless against G8 Okinawa and against the G8 itself. Their goal, to publicly oppose to the G8 which promotes a system of enlarging the gap between the haves and have-nots, which is the exact reason of poverty and homelessness. The homeless group also participated in the action of the siege of the US military base. The Tokyo group returned to Tokyo on July 29, 2000 after 35 days of marching and solidarity actions against the G8.
Okinawa & the US Military Bases
after the second world war, the USA military force occupied Okinawa until its retrocession to Japan in 1972. Crimes committed by U.S. soldiers are obviously a big issue in the local areas. In 1995, a group of u.s. soldiers abducted and gang-raped a local elementary school girl. 100,000 people gathered at the protest rally against this crime. In 2007, 110,000 people gathered at the protest rally against the re-writing in schoolbooks about the collective suicide that happened during the second world war in okinawa. This year, a u.s. soldier abducted and raped a local high school female student.
japan u.s. security treaty: japan is engaged in a military alliance with u.s.a.
Anti-war Struggle in Japan
（Sound demo in Tokyo）
sound demo is something like a street rave party, inspired by the reclaim the streets movement in europe. a sound demo involves a sound truck with a sound system and djs and a number of internationally popular djs, such as konishi from pizzicato five and eye from boredoms have performed in the past.
（Anti-war resistance “Festa”）
anti-war in japan, since there has historically been a very big presence of the US military and there are many US military bases, the anti-war, anti-military base movement is very strong, and it is also a big foundation and motive for the anti-g8 movement in japan. especially, the fact that there are many japanese defense force bases in Hokkaido accelerate the local's motive for anti-g8 through their anti-war, anti-base ethics. many big protests were carried out in front of the japanese defense force bases at the time when the defense force was being deployed to iraq.
Precarity in Japan
Resistance against Precarity
Freeters is a compound of “free” in English and the German “arbeiter”. It is a neologism used in the everyday life of today’s Japan , where the once promised life-long employment for the entire nation is a story of the Fordist (or Toyota-ist) past
in 2004 that the Freeters Union was inaugurated. It was based upon PAFF -- the network of part-timers, Arbeiters, freeters, and foreign workers -- which had been formed by the freeters themselves and some active students.
The union organized “Freeters’ May Day” in 2004, in order to call wide attention to the situation that the pracarity is the major condition of labor today. Beginning from 2005, it came to be organized in collaboration with associated groups and called “May Day of Freedom and Survival.” In 2006 they introduced the marching method called “sound-demo,” a moving rave party, which was developed during the anti-Iraq war protests and was very successful in involving passersby into action. On May Day more than one hundred people marched in the street with a music truck. There was a clash between the police and the demonstrators, and three people were arrested.
Internet Cafe Refugees
Most Internet Cafes and fast food chains are open 24 hours and one is able to spend the night and get rest and sometimes shower in these facilities for a cheap price. Internet Cafe Refugees are in fact actually homeless who opt to stay at 24 hour internet cafes and fast food chains, instead of sleeping on the streets. When the word internet cafe refugee became first known, the majority of the internet café refugees were young people who worked as "one-call workers" on a one-day basis but couldn't afford to pay rent, took refuge in these 24 hour cheap facilities. Now there are even elderly people who take refuge in these facilities as well. The Internet Cafe Refugees' three essential goods for survival are cell phone (to receive job offers), coin lockers (for their belongings) and internet cafes (for shelter).
Homelessness in Japan
...is a big social issue. It represents the outcome of capitalism and neo-liberalism. And the government takes much effort in trying to hide the fact that their system gives birth and maintains poverty, when the main reason for poverty in Japan is the government's negative approach towards basic welfare and discriminative perspective towards homeless people or the have-nots.
Blue Tent Village
Large Tent Villages in metropolitan areas
Blue tents are make-shift tents made with "blue sheets" which can be found relatively easily on construction sites and can serve as protection from rain and wind. Blue tents are not only seen in large homeless communities, but also in local parks all around Tokyo and other
metropolitans in Japan.
The majority of the homeless are people from rural areas that have come to metropolitan areas to find jobs, but before they do, they wind up without money and a residing address, which in many cases become an obstacle for finding a job or an apartment.
Day laborers, migrant workaers
Evictions or “sweeping up“ under the pretext of sports or cultural events
The government's policies towards the homeless is a very brutal one, employing "clean-up" campaigns, meaning forced evictions of human beings from their homes, in order to hide them from the public eyes. (insert shift images/video of cardboard box village and eviction nishishinjuku)
...is one of the major "yoseba" in Japan, along with the Sanya area in Tokyo. Kamagasaki is located in the second major city Osaka,. Yoseba is a so-called black market for supplying day-labor force, where the unemployed workers find their jobs through brokers. Brokers are in most cases Yakuza (mafia) or their affiliates. Traditionally a slum area, Kamagasaki (and also Sanya) is an area where day-laborers are constantly fuming with discontent with their extremely low living and working conditions and also repression and harassment from the authority. There has been many uprisings and riots in the past ignited by the oppressed day-laborers.
(→ show (insert?) video of kamagasaki riot?)
No-jukusha (street sleepers)
The direct translation for the Japanese word Nojukusha would be street sleeper, or campers. The picture on the left hand side was taken in Nagai Park in Osaka, the second major city in Japan, when the authorities employed forced eviction of the park campers (homeless) under the pretext of cleaning-up for the World Championships in Athletics. Just an year before, there was another forced eviction of campers in another park in Osaka under the pretext of cleaning up for the "World Rose Convention".
(→ show (insert?) video of nagai eviction?)
The picture on the right hand side shows Enoir cafe, an open-air café run by park campers. Enoir means "a space with art" and people gather to just draw pictures or just to relax among the greenery, or to hang out with the homeless campers in Yoyogi Park, located in central tokyo near to the biggest fashion and shopping area in Tokyo. At enoir cafe, they serve tea or fair-trade coffee in exchange of anything but money, for instance, a sketch or a song or just even a pen. The two main people (or campers) are also performing artists in their early 30s, and lately, one of them has started a collective of female homeless campers that make and sell hand-made menstrual pads to support themselves and also spread awareness of the situation of female homeless campers.
Basic daily needs
food, shelter, clothing, medical aid, etc.
Volunteer homeless support groups based at main homeless communities provide the homeless with basic daily needs, such as food, temporary shelter, clothing, medical assistance and so on. These activities should be done by the government, but since the government ignores these basic human needs, the volunteer homeless support groups have to tend to the well-being of our fellow human beings.
pension and other public aid
They also take on the role of negotiating with the local governmental offices for claiming welfare support, pension and other public aids that are actually available to the needy, but not applied due to the discriminative attitude towards the homeless.
Direct actions & protests
The homeless support groups also help in organising direct actions and protests by the homeless. For instance, weekly protests in front of the Tokyo metropolitan government building held every monday morning and many more, including a recent protest that went straight to the security company which evicted people resting in underground walkways in central Tokyo.
Homeless support groups also don't forget to have fun, for instance, organising festivals once in a while. At these festivals, you'll see the homeless people enjoying karaoke, food, live music, games and film showings.
Homeless support groups also promote international solidarity through their NO-VOX network. NO-VOX is an international network which originated in Europe, for support for not only the homeless but over abroad spectrum of deprived people and minority groups such as unemployed precarious workers, gender minorities, the disabled, migrants, sex workers, etc. NO-VOX Japan has done international solidarity actions, such as protesting in front of embassies of France, Brazil, etc... whenever there is news of mistreatment of have-nots in other countries, and has been present at many World Social Forums throughout the years, and had also participated in the actions agasint G8 Heiligendamm.
everyday at several places in Tokyo and metropolitan areas
homeless support groups, church groups, etc.
food service / medical consultation
information exchange (e.g. governmental policies towards the homeless action plans)
cultural events (e.g. movie screenings)
Food service is provided almost everyday, in the main homeless communities by volunteer homeless support groups, and church groups. They not only hand out food, but also leaflets that describe the government's recent policies towards the homeless, and also direct actions and protests that will be taking place soon. Sometimes, cultural events such as film screenings follow the food service.
Support groups also do night patrols. On night patrols, the volunteer homeless supporters visit the blue tents and street sleepers to check up on their health conditions and needs.
Anti-globalisation movement in Japan
one of the recent main topics for attac japan is nti-privatization of postal service
a group that spawned from attac japan, its main topic, policy proposal of tobin tax
Anti-repression Protest at the Italian Embassy
solidarity action by no-g8 action japan against the unjust and ridiculous trials against the genoa activists. about a dozen activists participated.
Actions/protests against the WTO, IMF, FTA
Fascism and Nationalism in Japan
11th of February National Foundation Day
15th of August Victory over Japan Day
Uyoku dantai(Ultra right-wing party)
Antifa action in Japan
antifa in japan is centered around the anti-yasukuni shrine movement. every year on the 15th of august, right wing groups , more than one thousand individuals gather at the yasukuni shrine located in the exact center of tokyo, to worship and glorify the war-dead. an anti-action against these ring wing groups are carried out by the leftists also every year. among multiple anti-fascist, anti-nationalist groups that carry out demos on this day at the shrine, anarchists also engage in actions against the right wing fascists and nationalists every year. especially the anarchist group has to face two big opponents, the ring wingers and the authority at the same time. the right wingers will not be arrested if they attack the leftists, but the leftists will surely be arrested if they attack the right wing.
Autonomous spaces in Tokyo
Irregular Rhythm Asylum
Irregular Rhythm Asylum is an infoshop and autonomous space in the center of Tokyo called Shinjuku. Independent music records and cds, personal and political zines, books, t-shirts and other goodies are scattered among the small space. It also boasts a library of books and zines from all over the world. Since its opening in January 2004, activists, anarchists and d.i.y. lovers from all over the world drop by to chat with local activists, anarchists and d.i.y. people who hang out at this friendly autonomous space, which serves as a portal for all involved in the subcultural and activist scene in Japan. if you are interested in anarchism in japan, this is the place to go.
Shirouto no Ran (Amature’s riot)
shirouto no ran means amateur's riot. they are based in a lively neighborhood in tokyo called koenji. they have succeeded to integrate into the local neighborhood and have obtained spaces for dirt cheap rent along a local shopping street, opening a recycle shop, cafe, second hand clothes shop, and recently a free space. they have organised demos such as "anti-rent" demo, "give me back my bike" demo, and various sound demos. the main guy, Matsumoto recently ran for election in his district, his main goal only to cause a riot without being harrassed or stopped by the authority. he turned koenji into a liberated and autonomous zone for the one week during his election campaign, with hardcore punk bands playing on the streets, all in attempt to reclaim their city.
Poetry in the kitchen
poetry in the kitchen started out as a book cafe. they are located in central tokyo. their walls are lined with books mostly about alternative lifestyles and subculture and politics. it is a collectively run free space, with frequent events such as film screenings, poetry reading and other various d.i.y. related events such as the tokyo book fair (of zines, etc). it also serves as a creative space for people to come in and screen t-shirts, copy zines, etc. many activist groups have their meetings here as well. they serve zapatista coffee for ?200 donation a cup.
③ Actions in the run-up
August 2007 Protest in front of Germany Embassy in Tokyo
June 2007 Hotel of Japanese Delegation during G8-Summit in Germany
② What is going on in Hokkaido
Hokkaido as Japanese periphery
Developing Hokkaido by Meiji-government
What was once just an island of vast wilderness in the far north of japan, the meiji government (era of the meiji emperor, two generations before hirohito, the war emperor) discovered and set their eyes on hokkaido's fertile land and rich resources and began their campaign of their emergence to Hokkaido. the meiji government recruited settlers from the main island and there was a surge of development carried out by the new settlers. this so-called development in hokkaido by the japanese people was in the native ainu people's eyes, an invasion by the japanese who stole the ainu land and forced the ainu people to move to other territories.
Large settlements into Ainu territory
After initial contact with the immigrants, large settlements gradually spread into Ainu territory by the newcomers. As the Japanese moved north and took control over Ainu lands, the Ainu often gave up without resistance.
Assimilating the Ainu, outlawing their language
Japanese policies became increasingly aimed at assimilating the Ainu in the Meiji period, outlawing their language and restricting them to farming on government-provided plots and as labor in the Japanese fishing industry. As the Japanese government encouraged immigration of ethnic Japanese to populate Hokkaido, the Ainu became increasingly marginalised in their own land.
Development of mining industry
In the early stages of the postwar reconstruction of japan and the period of high economic growth, coal from hokkaido was valued as a source of energy, thus many miners were working and living in hokkaido. in the 1960s, the transition of energy from coal to oil occurred and by the 1980s, most mines were closed down.
Financial collapse of Yubari-city
Yubari city had once been one of the prime coal mining towns, but ever since the transition of the energy policy from coal to oil occurred, mines were closed down one after another.When the mines were operating Y ari had as many as 120,000 people, right before the closing down of mines in the 1980s. In 2007 the city made news headlines, due to bankruptcy and the refusal by the national government to bail it out. The city is famous for melon and the Yubari International Fantastic Film Festival, which skipped a show in 2006 due to the city's financial crisis.
Hokkaido: The northernmost island of Japan
Protests at The Windsor Lake Toya started ...
Other networks & groups involved
G8 Summit NGO Forum
Environment, Human rights/Peace, Poverty/Development、Amnesty 、Peace Boat、Green Peace
An assembly of 300 some groups from Tokyo, planning to participate in the mass demonstration in Sapporo. Its main project is lobbying and organizing the Alternative Summit.
Hokkaido Citizen Forum
The network of local NGOs, citizen’s organizations, and anti-war groups.
Aside from lobbying activities, it is organizing the Alternative summit and the mass demonstration in Sapporo.
G8 Media Network
the network of independent media, working with all of the above mentioned groups
the network of legal advisors and attorneys working for all of the above mentioned groups
International Forum for Anti-G8
the network of leftist scholars and intellectuals that is organizing the International Forum and Activists’ Conference
The anti-G8 groups and NGOs are collaborating in certain areas. For instance, the mass demonstration in Sapporo is a joint project; they share the legal and media teams.
In the mid March, there will be the International Preparatory Meeting.
Working groups of NO! G8 Action-Spectra
Airport antion group
International coalition meeting group
Eat Resist Exist D.I.Y. food collective
Film and music group
No! G8 Action
A non-centralized, non-authoritarian network employing PGA Hallmarks
Established in April 2007, participated in actions against G8 Heiligendamm
Learning from the experience in Germany, it motivated the establishment of a larger coalition, G8 Action Network.
It focuses on international solidarity.
It consists of varied working groups.
Broad collective of networks, ranging from small to large groups, of varied tactical lines.
In Japan it is a rare occasion that a radical group motivates the effort of coalition building ? but so far so good.
It came from the German experience and also from the isolation during the anti-Iraq war movement.
Infotour of No! G8 Action
Infotour group of NO! G8 Action has toured…
NYC, Montreal, Toronto
Hong kong, Taiwang, South Korea, The Philipine ,Australia
10 domestic cities including Hokkaido in coordination with Dissent! from Germany
Schedule for the Actions
Four Days of Themed Action (Rally and March)
July 1st Sapporo Anti-military base/anti-war
July 2nd Sapporo Anti-WTO,privataization
July 3rd Sapporo Anti-neo-liberalism
July 4th Sapporo Farmers' day, the day of natives
July 5th Sapporo The day of international action
July 6th Chitose Airport Protest
July 7th Lake Toya Block the G8
Sapporo Alternative Summit
July 8th Lake Toya Block the G8
Sapporo Alternative Summit
July 9th Lake Toya Block the G8
The G8 Summit will take place between the 7th and 9th of July. Our action days will begin on the 1st of July. There will be a series of themed demos in Sapporo during succeeding four days. For now the themes are tentatively: (1) Anti-neo-liberalism, namely, anti-poverty, precarity, homelessness; (2) farmers’ day, characterizing Hokkaido as the land of farmers; (3) anti-military base/anti-war; and (4) the day of natives and minorities, symbolizing the Ainu people, Hokkaido’s native habitants before Japan’s colonization in the 19th century. (In Toronto, Ken Kawashima, a friend of Go and Sabu, suggested that we put a stress on making a coalition of all Asian people who have been suffering from Japanese imperialist past and its neoliberal continuation today, to fight against Japanese state and capitalism. Go and sabu agreed with it. But we have not discussed how to categorize it in the context of global action day.)
July 5th shall be the day of mass rally and demo in Sapporo. We propose to make it the international day of action, calling a simultaneous protest in different cities of the world.
During the three days of the Summit we are planning mass direct action at sites near Lake Toya. People are trying to approach the site as close as possible to send their voices.
Various groups are planning different direct actions. The tactics are varied . You will get the information from the affinity groups in Japan. You are encouraged to make proposals or organize your own actions in consultation with Japanese groups. Your creativity is most welcome and appreciated.
Japanese activists scene needs global connections and exposure, so we ask for different types of participations. What is crucial primarily is a convergence, namely, to meet and talk person to person. Aside from the actions, we are planning following events.
Global Activist Conference: All the activists who have a little extra time are encouraged to meet at workshops and speak about themselves. These will take place in Tokyo, Kyoto/Osaka area, and Sapporo, around the end of June. (As we shall explain in a minute, most of the foreign activists who go to Hokkaido have to travel either via Tokyo or Osaka.)
There will be a series of symposia, featuring activist type intellectuals such as David Graeber, Marina Sitrin, and Andrej Grubacic, who will come to Japan for solidarity.
Abut the events organized by other groups, there will be Alternative Summit (from July 6th to 8th), involving wider range of groups including NGOs. NO! G8 Action is going to be part of. There will also be a summit of the natives. (Please input more information about this.)
Meanwhile the state of Japan is planning a international conference of university presidents. Against this a coalition of students’ organizations are calling for protest.
Music concerts of Anti-G8 theme are planned in Tokyo, Sapporo, as well as at the camp near Lake Toya, the site of the G8. The participants are punks, Djs, and vanguard musicians who took part in the Sound Demonstrations against Iraq war (we will show you the image of this type demo later), possibly including Boredams, Yoshihide O-tomo, et al.
We are also told that NGO groups are inviting famous figures such as Bono for their own concert, but it has nothing to do with us.
In Sapporo City, we are organizing screenings of films related to Global Justice Movement and the Anti-G8 projects from the past.
Various kinds of radical theater groups are going to take part in the anti-G8 protests, some in their own theater space, others on the street or other sites.
Suggested travel plans
From Europe to Tokyo(Japan)
Airplane 13 hrs € 700
There are no flights that go directly from foreign cities to Sapporo. All are via Tokyo.
The costs of flights vary according to your location, so please check it in your own city.
Exception is that from some cities in Korea and Hong Kong, there are direct flights to Sapporo. It is worth checking if it works for your situation.
Rostock caravan: there is no concrete information about this yet.
as far as i know, it is still just a rumor. One guy has ideas for a caravan through Russia. He is organising already over 200 visas for russians with Esperanto people in sapporo. Some english people are also expressing interest in train, but so far no concrete info, or contact.
From Tokyo to Sapporo(Hokkaido)
Train + Ferry 33 hrs € 42
Night Bus +Train 24 hrs € 46
Bus + Ferry 28 hrs € 60
Train (only) 31 hrs € 70
Airplane 1.5 hrs € 63
From Sapporo to Lake Toya
Bus 2.5 hrs € 20
We are still researching the safest and cheapest way to get there from different locations. We shall begin to upload the information at our website in the near future. But so far, our tentative conclusion is that airplane might be the cheapest way, rather than boat or train (i.e., trans-Siberia railway as some have suggested).
To get to Sapporo, which is the nearest city from Lake Toya and the biggest city in Hokkaido, you will have to fly either via Tokyo or Osaka. Hokkaido is connected to the main land only via airplane or boat, namely, there is no car traffic accessible to it. So all of you might as well stay in either city for a period of time, before the summit and participate in the events.
From Sapporo Lake Toya can be reached either by train (three hours) or car (two hours). Bus ride will take three hours.
There will be a camp and media center as well. This is the place where the main events will take place.
Convergence centres or Camps
For the security reasons, the location of the camp will be announced right before the event. But the place is secured.
Due to the severe restriction imposed by the authority, the scale will be much smaller than the one you saw in Germany.
Tokyo: Convergence Centers (Irregular Rhythm Asylum and one in Koenji Area); Inexpensive Accommodation (2000~2500 yen) in Sanya area and limited amount of private homes
In Tokyo, we will set up a convergence center where you get information and participate in workshops. We will secure cheapest accommodation (about $15 per night) in a certain area of the city. Also we will organize network of people who are willing to accommodate the visitors for free.
Osaka and Kyoto: Convergence Centers （somewhere）; Inexpensive Accommodation (2000~2500 yen) in Kamagasaki area and limited amount of private homes
In Osaka/Kyoto area, we shall set up similar facilities and situations. But these two urban areas are very different and the activist communities are also different.
Sapporo: Convergence Center; Camp (one can stay with sleeping bag and tent, with vegan food); Inexpensive Accommodation (3000yen); Independent Media Center
In Sapporo, there will be a convergence center. There will be a camp where you can stay with your own tents and sleeping bags. Vegan food is available for free, with sliding scale donations. There will be workshops and events. There will be an independent media center, where foreign media activists can go and set up their station.
Near Lake Toya: Camp and Independent Media Center
Immigration & Visa
Japanese government innovated US-VISIT…
The bad news is that beginning from the late November, Japan will begin to employ the same immigration rules as the US. It is locally called the “US Visit,” where all foreign visitors are fingerprinted and photo-taken. People are organizing a wide opposition to this.
We cannot tell you how severe the restriction of the immigration will be for the activists coming for the anti-G8 protests. But we can recommend the activists who have many arrest records in the past and are nervous about it, but absolutely want to come − please contact us and we shall try to make special visa application.
All in all, if Japanese immigration restricts foreign visitors too severely on this occasion, this will be made into a international stir. We will prepare a campaign for this.
aim or goal: anti-terrorism
time of start: November, 2007
target: foreign nationals
occasion: every entry & re-entry into Japan
region of body: face and 2 fingers (each one of right and left)
result: It achieved only a slight effect: revealing some illegal visitors, mostly with previous deportation records.
others: Historically Korean and Japanese civil movement have abolished the fingerprinting under the Alien Registration Law.
There is no visa requirement for the tourists from Western Europe and North America.
From the countries of Eastern Europe, Russia, and South East Asia, organizational invitation is necessary.
Please let us know, because there are many organizations that are willing to help you.
Japanese police behavior
Weapons they carry:
truncheons, plastic shields, sand-stuffed gloves
Tactics they employ:
Preventive detention, questioning, body search, bag search, presentation of passport ID, etc.
※NON-obligatoly to subject to their orders
In the situation of direct action:
Mass-arrests are uncommon
The most common weapons Japanese police carry are truncheons, plastic shields, and sand-stuffed globs. They used to use tear gas and water-cannon, but not much recently. Pepper spray has not been used for some time, but some source says that they might start using it.
They don’t do mass-arrests like the European and American police. They tend to do close combat by forming a line and arrest people one by one by drawing them into their side.
It is not illegal to hide your face on the street. One does not have to respond to their interrogations; one does not have to let them check their belongings. These are not obligation but only voluntary cooperation.
They rarely start attacking protesters like elsewhere; they are not as aggressive as American and European police forces.
If you are Japanese, once you are arrested, you are advised to be completely silent, and likely to be held for twenty three days − the extensions of 3 days, 10 days, and 10 days. The enormity of the custody period has been criticized by the Amnesty International.
But there is one thing we would like you to know. In the past, foreign political activists have rarely been arrested. The police prefer to let them go. Probably there is a policy of not making political events internationally known. Japan tends to be very nervous about their international reputation. We are hoping that this will remain the same for the anti-G8 2008.
In any case, a legal team has been formed, while politicians and civic organizations have organized a campaign to watch police behaviors toward the G8 2008.
Authority’s action against protestors:
Media has reported…
Japanese Government to Keep ‘Hooligans’ Away from Summit
The total 15.5 billion yen budget is allocated to the precaution/security expense
Japan mulls deploying Patriot-3 missiles during G8 summit
MPD to seek veterans' assistance with security issues
Restrictions on using parks in Hokkaido
Speaking about Japanese media, their tendency is very similar to that ofthe American main media today. So some are reporting about us with clearintention to exclude us from the society. But there are small amount ofpeople in the media who share the same opinion with us. We are trying towork with them.
Multi-language leaflets of legal advice will be available
We will hand out leaflet of legal advice in each language.
Detention is generally for 3 days with a possible two time’s extention of 10 days- Maximum 23days
We will be uploading more information on our website. Please check
it from time to time.
Japanese activists are advised to keep complete silence. Meanwhile foreigners will be fingerprinted upon the entry of the country and their identities will be known anyway. Therefore, they are advised to carry their passports and reveal their minimun identity.
International solidarity in East Asia
Asian Anarchist Network
international solidarity in east asia the east asian groups that participated in the struggle against the wto in hong kong almost all openly express their opposition against the G8. there is an anti-G8 international preparatory meeting planned in mid-march. the most militant and aggressive group in east asia, the Korean Confederation of Trade Unions (KCTU) is expressing their will to participate in the anti-g8 actions in lake toya this july.
Significance of the anti-G8 movement as the only Asian country of the G8, Japan
G8 in a society of high consumerism and control
Rethinking of Japanese imperialism and its continuation
The appearance of the anti- or alter-globalisation movement in East Asia
Creation of international solidarity from an Asian country
Come to lake Toya! Or International Days of Action
Most of all, we would love to have you there. This is a crucial moment for Japanese social and political movements to open themselves to be global. We are hoping to make this anti-G8 project the first occasion that the movements of East and West meet For this your creative engagement is indispensable.
But of course, everybody cannot come. So please respond to our call for international action day in a way most suitable for you.
At last for those of you who come to Japan earlier, please stop by at Irregular Rhythm Asylum in Shinjyuku area of Tokyo.