MPD bolsters Ogasawara police force against suspected Chinese coral poachers


The Metropolitan Police Department has deployed 28 officers to the remote Ogasawara Islands to protect residents concerned by Chinese fishermen who are poaching valuable coral from the surrounding seabed.

The contingent was sent because the Tokyo Metropolitan Government is responsible for administering the islands, which are about 1,000 km south of the capital.

The team, which includes riot police, will beef up patrols in areas where sightings of suspected poachers have been made. The MPD also provided an additional police car to Ogasawara Police Station on Chichijima Island and is planning to deploy vehicles with searchlights, too.

The police station started getting reports from residents in early October about suspicious ships and lights at night.

The Foreign Ministry has already asked the Chinese government to stop the poaching on around 10 occasions, but despite the requests and an arrest last week, the Japan Coast Guard spotted 212 Chinese fishing boats around the Ogasawara Islands on Thursday.

  • Scott Reynolds

    What is the issue here? The damage to coral reefs, or the fact that the “poachers” are Chinese?

    • Island_Boi


    • Firas Kraïem

      It does seem very hypocritical of the Japanese authorities to become aware of environmental preservation when the culprits are Chinese while at the same time pushing the Henoko base and the ridiculous Olympic stadium. But then again, it’s what authorities do everywhere (perhaps in Japan a wee bit more so).

      • Ahojanen

        Don’t mix up Henoko/Olympics cases and the ongoing coral poaching. They are different, and the latter is an international issue.

        Things are simple. Japanese authorities would not have to take any action were Chinese fishermen not practicing environmentally damaging activities (if not necessarily illegal).

      • Firas Kraïem

        “They are different,” obviously, you can always find a difference between any two things if you look hard enough. Whether it’s relevant, however…

  • Goodboy Silas

    Why the environmentalist group don’t accuse China?
    Greenpeace, how is the taste of the China money?