Anti-Japan protesters assaulted a South Korean employee of the Japanese consulate in Busan in front of the embassy as he tried to take pictures of the protest, sources familiar with the matter said yesterday.
Japanese consular officials reported the assault to South Korean police and urged authorities to take measures to prevent a similar occurrence in the future.
The sources said several protesters surrounded the consulate employee as he took photos.
The employee suffered a scrape on his right hand during the altercation, the sources said.
The incident occurred on March 1, the anniversary of the 1919 independence movement against Japanese colonial rule of the Korean peninsula. South Korean activists also staged an anti-Japan rally in front of the Japanese embassy in Seoul that day.
Ties between Japan and South Korea have been under strain over issues stemming from Japan's 1910-1945 rule, and a territorial dispute over islets in the Sea of Japan, known as the East Sea in South Korea.