World Foreign-born residents in Japan sue the government for alleged racial profiling


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Tokyo - Three foreign-born residents in Japan are suing the country’s government over alleged racial profiling, highlighting an ongoing debate about Japanese identity and nationality.

The three plaintiffs, all residents of Tokyo, filed the lawsuit in the Tokyo National Court and held a news conference with their lawyers on Monday, according to public broadcaster NHK.

The suit alleges they were questioned by police on the basis of their race, skin color, nationality, and other factors, constituting discrimination in violation of Japan’s constitution, NHK reported.

They are seeking three million yen (about $20,355) in compensation per person from the national government, the Tokyo metropolitan government, and the Aichi prefectural government.

One plaintiff came to Japan from India after marrying his wife, and has lived there for more than 20 years, NHK reported. Since then, he has been repeatedly stopped and questioned by police officers on the street, sometimes twice a day. It got so bad he became afraid to leave the house at times, he said, according to NHK.

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