Tokyo Police Step Up Security For Imperial Parade

Tokyo police step up security for Imperial parade

Japanese police have stepped up security in central Tokyo before Sunday's Imperial procession marking Emperor Naruhito's accession to the throne.

Crowds of people are expected along the parade route stretching from the Imperial Palace to the Akasaka residence.

Tokyo police plan to deploy 26,000 officers, including 3,000 dispatched from other prefectures. Police officers have set up checkpoints near the parade route to keep watch for suspicious vehicles.

Ropes have been put up along sidewalks without railings to prevent accidents from overcrowding. Police are patrolling the area on the lookout for suspicious objects.

Nearby railway stations and restaurants are also boosting security.

Subway operator Tokyo Metro plans to suspend the use of baggage lockers at 17 stations, starting on Saturday.

The operator will remove trash boxes at 26 stations on Sunday, and will also increase the number of station staff on duty to patrol the premises.

A senior Tokyo Metro official says he is sorry for the inconvenience to subway users, but he wants people to understand the necessity of safety measures against terrorism.