Shuri Castle sites defaced with oil-like substance

A security guard at Shuri Castle noticed that someone had sprayed oil-like sticky substance on a pillar of the Shrurei-mon gate at Shuri Castle sometime between Apr. 2nd and 3rd.

Further investigation of the castle premises found that the same liquid had been sprayed on the upper portion of the replica of the Bankoku-shinryo bell, and the doors of Zuisen-mon and Roukoku-mon gate.

Naha Police are investigating the components of the liquid. There have been similar cases of vandalism at national heritage sites outside of Okinawa, including at Kamomioya-jinja shrine in Kyoto, a World Heritage site, and at Kinpusen-ji temple in Nara, which is one of Japan’s Designated National Treasures.

According to Naha Police, when a security guard at the castle site went on a patrol, he noticed that one of the Shurei-mon gate pillars had a large dark spot on it, and also found that similar liquid was sprayed on objects in other areas.

Yusuyuki Uezu, the head of the Okinawa Churashima Foundation that manages the castle properties says, “I feel so sad that someone has done this kind of a terrible thing to damage our treasured cultural property. We sincerely hope that people would stop doing such things.”