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Shibuya bans drinking alcohol on streets for Halloween, New Year

The assembly of Tokyo's Shibuya Ward approved an ordinance Wednesday banning the consumption of alcohol on some of its streets and parks during Halloween and New Year events to address an increasing number of incidents.
It calls on restaurants to refrain from serving customers alcohol, bans the use of audio equipment blasting loud noises and prohibits individuals from climbing up street lamps in areas near JR Shibuya Station, one of the capital's major entertainment districts.
There are, however, no penalties stipulated for offenders in the ordinance which comes into force Thursday.
"It's unfortunate that a law needs to be laid down because of the negative attention (the district) gained from events like Halloween," Shibuya Mayor Ken Hasebe said. "It's a problem that should have been resolved through proper etiquette and morals."
"As long as concerns remain over people who cause trouble and commit crimes, we will carry out our duty and make this ban widely known," he said.
More than 300,000 people, mostly aged from their late teens to their 30s, crowded around Shibuya's iconic scramble crossing on Halloween and the previous weekend last year, according to police.
Ten men, both Japanese and foreigners, were referred to prosecutors in January after they allegedly overturned a small truck near the station during a Halloween event in late October last year.
A panel was set up by Shibuya Ward to discuss what to do with escalating pranks in public spaces in the district during the celebrations. They issued an interim report in May calling for the establishment of regulations.


© KYODO
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