24th Anniversary Of Tokyo Sarin Gas Attack Marked

24th anniversary of Tokyo sarin gas attack marked

Wednesday marks the twenty-fourth anniversary of the sarin nerve gas attack on the Tokyo subway system by the Aum Shinrikyo cult. Bereaved families of the victims mourned at one of the stations targeted.

Members of the cult released the toxic substance inside rush-hour subway trains in central Tokyo on March 20, 1995. Thirteen people died and about 6,300 others were injured.

At Kasumigaseki subway station, the scene of one of the attacks, 16 station officials offered silent prayers at 8 a.m. on Wednesday, almost 24 years to the minute since the attack occurred.

Bereaved families of the victims and station officials offered flowers at an altar set up inside the station.

Thirteen members of the former cult's leadership, including the leader Shoko Asahara, whose real name is Chizuo Matsumoto, were sentenced to death for crimes including the Tokyo sarin gas attack. All 13 were executed last July.

Shizue Takahashi, whose husband was the assistant stationmaster at Kasumigaseki and was killed in the attack, has visited the station on every anniversary.

She said she felt different this year, as this is the first anniversary of her husband's death since the perpetrators were executed. She recalled that she felt the weight of the executions for six months after they were carried out.