Reports dated Wednesday, July 24, claim that a growing number of fuel stations across South Korea are reportedly following calls by the Korea Oil Station Association (KOPA) to refuse service to Japanese cars amid growing trade and political tensions between Japan and South Korea. The developments follow a statement on Friday, July 19, by an alliance of garages that it would not repair cars from Japan.
A large demonstration also took place outside the Japanese Embassy in Seoul on Wednesday; similar well-attended protests have been reported in previous weeks. A heightened security presence and localized transportation disruptions are likely near all related gatherings.
The political and trade row was sparked by the July 1 announcement by Japan that it would restrict the export of semiconductor materials, a major industry for South Korea. Sales of Japanese goods have decreased since the July 1 announcement amid growing anti-Japanese sentiment.
Potentially impacted individuals present in South Korea are advised to fill up vehicle tanks whenever gasoline is available and to ensure sufficient fuel reserves before all long journeys. Monitor developments to the situation and avoid all potential protests due to the risk of violence.
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