The above pictured tweet was posted at 1:27 p.m. JST yesterday. Despite ending with a smiley emoticon, the harrowing message openly states that “a random attack” will take place at 10 a.m. on the Japan Rail Gifu station, Gifu Prefecture, at around 10 a.m. today.

Posted by Twitter user @45dn, the message warns of an attack, but then states that it may or may not be committed at the specific hour:

“Tomorrow at 10 o’clock at JR Gifu station, [I’m going to carry out/there will be a] random attack!! Whether it’ll happen on time or not I don’t know, so the police are going to be in for a hard time, too! :-)” 

25 February at Gifu Station

Idle threat or not, the Twitter user clearly states that they, or someone they know, will attack people at random at the station. While many may shrug this off as mere attention-seeking weirdness, after the attacks that took place in Akihabara on 8 June, 2008 – wherein 25-year-old Tomohiro Kato drove a small truck into a crowd of people before randomly slashing at passersby with a knife, killing seven and injuring a further 10 – many people are likely to be concerned.

The Twitter user, who goes by the handle @45dn, has more than 2,000 followers at the time of writing. He is believed to be a university or possibly a high school student.

Whether this is a genuine threat from a troubled individual or a simple hoax intended to create unrest, we recommend exercising caution if you find yourself in or nearby Gifu station today.

Update: The account held by @45dn has now been shut down. We’ll have more information about this case as it comes.
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