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Tokyo subway sarin attack

1995 terrorist attack by Japanese cult Aum Shinrikyo / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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The Tokyo subway sarin attack (地下鉄サリン事件, Chikatetsu Sarin Jiken, "Subway Sarin Incident") was an act of domestic terrorism perpetrated on 20 March 1995, in Tokyo, Japan, by members of the cult movement Aum Shinrikyo. In five coordinated attacks, the perpetrators released sarin on three lines of the Tokyo Metro (then Teito Rapid Transit Authority) during rush hour, killing 13 people,[1][2][3][4][5] severely injuring 50 (some of whom later died), and causing temporary vision problems for nearly 1,000 others. The attack was directed against trains passing through Kasumigaseki and Nagatachō,[6] where the National Diet (Japanese parliament) is headquartered in Tokyo.[7]

Quick facts: Tokyo Subway Sarin Attack .mw-parser-output ....
Tokyo Subway Sarin Attack
Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department police officers respond to the scene
LocationTokyo, Japan
Date20 March 1995 (1995-03-20)
7:00–8:10 a.m. (JST)
TargetTokyo subway
Attack type
Injured~5,510, around 1,050 seriously[lower-alpha 1][1]
No. of participants

The group, led by Shoko Asahara, had already carried out several assassinations and terrorist attacks using sarin, including the Matsumoto sarin attack nine months earlier. They had also produced several other nerve agents, including VX, and attempted to produce botulinum toxin and had perpetrated several failed acts of bioterrorism. Asahara had been made aware of a police raid scheduled for March 22 and had planned the Tokyo subway attack in order to hinder police investigations into the cult and perhaps spark the apocalypse they believed in. The leader also wanted to start a Third World War.

In the raid following the attack, police arrested many senior members of the cult. Police activity continued throughout the summer, and over 200 members were arrested, including Asahara. Thirteen of the senior Aum management, including Asahara himself, were sentenced to death and later executed; many others were given prison sentences up to life. The attack remains the deadliest terrorist incident in Japan as defined by modern standards.[lower-alpha 2]