Restrictions dampen Tokyo’s celebrated Halloween party|Arab News Japan

Arab News Japan

TOKYO: Despite a ban issued by the mayor of popular hub Shibuya on gatherings in Shibuya Square, many Japanese and foreigners came in costume to celebrate Halloween on Tuesday evening.

Mayor HASEBE Ken, who issued an order banning parties in Shibuya and the nearby Harajuku district, feared a deadly stampede like the one that occurred a year ago in South Korea and which cost the lives of 149 people.

However, aficionados of scary and eccentric costumes were still very visible throughout the Halloween period, which gave rise to astonishing scenes in the adjacent streets of the most famous pedestrian crossing in the world.


A few eccentric characters attempted to take selfies on the famous Shibuya crossing despite orders by police not to stop or impede other pedestrians, and they were quickly moved on by police officers and security staff who manned barriers around the square.

A man dressed as a zombie, with his guts cut open and a fake knife stuck in his chest, was fed marshmallows in the shape of an eyeball. A charming Thai woman disguised as a police officer hung around Shibuya police station, where real Japanese police officers were busy managing the traffic of pedestrians so that the area did not get overcrowded.

Luckily, a superhero was on hand to help. A realistic Ultraman congratulated the local government’s moves to ensure the safety of all participants, and the evening went off without any major problems.

According to the mayor of Shibuya and Japanese law, security guards and municipal staff had no powers of enforcement, so people were free to wear strange costumes providing they weren’t contravening any laws or local rules. Only the police can enforce the law and they were out with their placard instructions in force to make sure the crowds didn’t get out of hand.

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