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Tension Between South Korea and Japan

South Korean

Seoul: A 78-year-old South Korean man died on Friday after setting himself on fire in front of the Japanese embassy in Seoul, the police said, amid rising trade and political disputes between Seoul and Tokyo.

The man, identified only by the surname Kim, drove his car onto the sidewalk in front of the entrance of the embassy building and ignited a fire inside his vehicle around 3.24 a.m., suffering burns all over his body, said the police.

Inside the car, inflammable materials including butane gas were found, Yonhap news agency reported.

The fire was extinguished in 10 minutes and the man, who had suffered severe burns, was rushed to a nearby hospital. At the hospital, he died from severe burn-related shock and respiratory failure later in the day. Kim drove the car, which he borrowed from an acquaintance the previous day, to the scene after leaving his house in the early hours of Friday, the police said.

He also spoke to the acquaintance on phone, saying he would start the fire because of his ill feeling towards Japan, the report said, citing police officials. Kim’s family told the police that the man’s father-in-law had been forcibly taken to Japan to work during World War II. (IANS)

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