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Korean woman hospitalized in Japan after being ‘served detergent’ in restaurant

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JTBC on Monday reports on a case of a Korean woman who was served a cup of water with dissolved detergent at a restaurant in Ginza, Tokyo, on Aug. 31. [SCREEN CAPTURE]
JTBC on Monday reports on a case of a Korean woman who was served a cup of water with dissolved detergent at a restaurant in Ginza, Tokyo, on Aug. 31. [SCREEN CAPTURE]

A Korean woman was allegedly hospitalized in Japan after being served a water cup with detergent at a restaurant earlier this summer, JTBC reported on Monday.

The incident occurred at a high-end restaurant in Ginza, Tokyo, on Aug. 31, according to JTBC and Japanese news outlets.

The woman, identified with the surname Kang, said she smelled hydrochloric acid in her cup. After she complained, Kang said the employee who served her the drink tried to dispose of it without addressing the issue.

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Kang said a different employee instructed her to use the toilet when she was about to vomit from a burning feeling in her throat, Yahoo Japan reported. Kang was then diagnosed with acute food poisoning at a nearby hospital.

The restaurant told Japanese news outlets the employee mistook a detergent bottle for a water pitcher.

Kang tells JTBC the two pitchers containing drinking water and detergent water are easily distinguishable. [SCREEN CAPTURE]
Kang tells JTBC the two pitchers containing drinking water and detergent water are easily distinguishable. [SCREEN CAPTURE]

But Kang and her husband said it was easy to distinguish between the two containers. The couple alleged the restaurant intentionally served them a cup of detergent because they were Koreans.

“The staff didn’t pull up my chair but did for other customers. They must have figured out I was Korean from my looks and accent,” Kang told JTBC.

The couple said they filed a gross negligence complaint with local police.

A different restaurant in Ginza came under fire last year for allegedly serving Korean tourists a sushi dish containing a chunk of wasabi.

Recent reports of anti-Japanese sentiment in Korea have also gone viral.

A Japanese YouTuber, Yuipyon, posted a video to the platform on Sunday in which a man in Korea told her he wanted to “kill all Japanese people.”

The man, who claimed he was from North Korea, approached her and another Japanese streamer, Yusupyon, and insulted them when they told him they were from Japan.

A Korean man throws anti-Japanese slurs at YouTuber Yuipyon after she said she was from Japan. [SCREEN CAPTURE]
A Korean man throws anti-Japanese slurs at YouTuber Yuipyon after she said she was from Japan. [SCREEN CAPTURE]

In the eight-minute-long video, the man said Japan is the country he hates the most and added that he wanted to “bite their heads off.”

Yuipyon told the man that she and her friend came to Korea because they liked the country.

“Koreans will strike you with a rock if you say that,” the man said. “Don’t say you’re from Japan.”

He said his hatred came from pent-up resentment over Japan’s colonial rule of Korea. He said his grandfather died because of Japan and called them “japs.”

Another Korean passerby in the video told them to turn a deaf ear and said not all Koreans were like him.

The video had more than 220,000 views as of Tuesday. Koreans in the comment section apologized for what the streamers experienced.

“I’ve got nothing else to say other than I am ashamed and sorry as a Korean,” one of the top comments read.

BY SOHN DONG-JOO [sohn.dongjoo@joongang.co.kr]

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