Anime executive wants to clear wreckage as soon as possible for the sake of people living in the neighborhood.

Last Thursday, the Kyoto City, Fushimi Ward animation studio of anime production company Kyoto Animation was the site of a horrific arson attack. 76 employees were inside the building at the time, which had had some of its standard security protocols shut down due to guests scheduled to visit that day, and 34 of the victims lost their lives, either at the scene or in the hospital.

Police have taken into custody 41-year-old Shinji Aoba, who witnesses report said “They stole my novel, so I set the fire” as officers subdued him shortly following the outbreak of the fire. Aoba also sustained burns in the incident, and remains hospitalized.

The number of dead, as well as dozens injured, make the attack one of the worst cases of violent crime to occur in Japan in the modern era, and taking place in Kyoto’s Fushimi, a quiet sector of a city known for its peaceful, tranquil atmosphere, has made the event all the more shocking. Two days after the attack, Kyoto Animation President Hideaki Hatta spoke about the charred remains of the studio, saying, “I think the people living in the neighborhood don’t want to see it. I would like to cover the wreckage, and remove the building quickly.”

However, Hatta’s desire to clear away the studio’s physical remnants doesn’t mean that he wants to sweep the incident under the rug, or for people to forget about the human beings who lost their lives on that spot. He went on to say:

“If it is possible, I would like to turn the site into a park, and erect a monument [to the deceased].”

Hatta also addressed Aoba’s claim of intellectual property theft, saying that he has never spoken with Aoba, nor received any written correspondence from him. “I have no idea what he’s talking about,” the animation executive said.

In addition, Hatta expressed his gratitude to the outpouring of sympathy from the global animation fan community. “People from many different countries have visited [the site of the attack]. Their kind messages have been a source of emotional support for us.”

Source: Asahi Shimbun Digital via Yahoo! Japan News
Top image: Wikipedia/L26
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