TOKYO, June 18, 2021 (AFP) – A grizzly bear was killed by poachers in northern Japan this Friday (18) as it crossed the city of Sapporo, injuring four people and roaming the busy streets.
The city of Sapporo said on Twitter that the bear had been “destroyed” and that local TV hunters had shot the animal.
Television footage showed the bear walking down a residential street, crossing a busy highway and scratching the gates of a military post, from which frightened soldiers fled.
A soldier was injured when a bear wandered through the city hosting the Tokyo Games Marathon. According to footage aired on local television stations, another victim was attacked by a bear from behind.
NHK television reported that the bear’s presence led to the closure of schools and the cancellation of flights at a small regional airport.
Earlier, government spokesman Katsunobu Gado warned residents of the Hokkaido region to be vigilant.
“A total of four people, including a soldier, were attacked and injured by the brown bear,” a spokesman said.
The NHK said one of the victims was about 40 years old, another 70 and 80 years old.
This is not the only bear-related incident in the country.
In Suzuki, Nagano, authorities said an 89-year-old woman was attacked in her garden and broke her arm.
Black bears are native to much of Japan, including the main island of the country, while grizzly bears are found in northern Hokkaido.
The Japanese Society of Bears and Woods warns that bears are more likely to be found in human-inhabited areas in search of food.