Since the coronavirus outbreak began in Wuhan, China, the world has seen a rise in xenophobia, with reports of discrimination including race-based harassment in schools, tourist spots and foreign communities in Japan prompting authorities and educators to take action.

Experts are worried the discrimination will escalate, not only against Chinese, but also any Japanese exposed to the coronavirus.

In late January, the city of Shimada, Shizuoka Prefecture, caused a stir by canceling a cultural exchange event for Chinese and Japanese residents. In an announcement on Facebook, the city's international exchange association posted information about its decision "out of concern about the spreading virus."