Anti-Japan rallies continue across mainland and in HK over Diaoyus
Louise Ho in Shanghai and Teddy Ng in Beijing
Protests targeting Japan were held in several major cities yesterday, prompting the postponement or cancellation of sports and cultural-exchange activities involving Japanese.
In Beijing, separate groups of protesters assembled outside the Japanese embassy at different times amid a stepped-up police presence.
There were about 100 protesters gathered at one point, with some waving the Chinese national flag and chanting "Diaoyus belong to China", referring to the disputed island chain in the East China Sea.
Japan this week agreed to buy three of the chain's five islets from a private Japanese owner. The chain is also claimed by Taiwan.
The protests on the mainland were peaceful, though one protester reportedly threw a plastic water bottle.
In Changsha, Hunan, more than 10 demonstrators gathered outside a shopping mall with Japanese ties. Dozens of protesters also took to the streets in Shenzhen and Guangzhou.
At a public square in Hefei, Anhui, more than 50 people gathered, with some shouting the Diaoyus belonged to China. The Shanghai Japanese School's campus in Pudong district postponed a scheduled sports day, from this Saturday to Wednesday, according to an English teacher who works at the school's other campus in Hongqiao district.
Mayumi Kawano, an office worker at the school's Pudong campus, said security guards there were put on higher alert, but she had not seen any protests at the school.
"Staff and students are a bit worried for their safety, and school may be suspended if the situation gets worse," she said.
Osaka and Kagawa prefecture in Japan announced they would not take part in a tourism festival in Shanghai due to begin on Saturday, Kyodo reported.
In Hong Kong, scuffles broke out in Exchange Square during a protest attended by about a dozen activists. The activists clashed with guards when they attempted to enter the Japanese consulate. The protesters included Tsang Kin-shing and Koo Sze-yiu, who earlier landed on the Diaoyus, which Japan calls the Senkaku Islands.
The protesters left after burning the Japanese military flag and a letter to Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda. Tsang said the group would organise a rally on Sunday and hoped to sail to the islands before Tuesday.
Additional Reporting by Ada Lee