In Japan, one of the major industrialized countries most closed to asylum seekers, public opinion demands that the country play its part in the reception of displaced Ukrainians.
as reported from Tokyo,Bruno Duval
Last year, Japan again rejected 90% of the asylum applications submitted: in total, almost 4,000 political refugee applicants were rejected in general indifference, without this giving rise to any particular debate. Of the more than three million Ukrainians who have already fled their country, only 47 have so far found asylum in Japan.
►Read also: War in Ukraine: Poland, Germany and Israel overwhelmed by the growing influx of refugees
But from now on, 85% of those polled want their country to open its doors wide to displaced Ukrainians. At some point, you have to move and in this case show humanity, says a Tokyoite at the microphone on RFI.
“We have a brotherly duty to all these displaced people. They are so far away from us … it is our only way to help them,” added a resident of the Japanese capital. “And then we ourselves have suffered so much from the war.”
Momentum of solidarity For some, the mobilization of recent weeks must be heard. “Many Japanese families say they are ready to welcome one or two Ukrainians to their homes for a few days while residents find them. Such a wave of solidarity must not go unnoticed,” said a Tokyo resident.
Confused by this change in public opinion in favor of the refugees, the government promises that it will be welcoming. The approximately 2,000 Ukrainians living in the archipelago are no less plagued by anxiety. They ask that members of their families join them.
But in Japan, the decision-making process is still very slow. But for their loved ones who are confronted with war, there is not a minute to lose.