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Anime fans shocked by arson attack at famous KyoAni studio

The Japan Times

An arson attack at a well-known animation studio in Kyoto that left at least 33 people dead Thursday sent shock waves among avid fans of anime both at home and abroad. Expressions of sympathy and prayers poured in from fans of works produced by Kyoto Animation Co., known as "KyoAni," after one of its studios in the western city was torched by a man in the morning. "(KyoAni's) works have inspired me," a vocational school student said, noting that he became an anime fan thanks to one of the studio's works, "K-On!" "I hope the damage will be as little as possible," said the 23-year-old student, who was also visiting the area where countless anime shops are located. About 70 people are believed to have been working when a 41-year-old man allegedly burst into the three-story studio in the city's Fushimi Ward, setting the place ablaze around 10:35 a.m. The man, who is now in the hospital, has admitted to setting fire to the studio, according to the police.

Kyoto Animation studio marks one year since deadly arson attack

The Japan Times

During the memorial service held at the site of the studio, which has since been demolished, President Hideaki Hatta pledged to rebuild the company. "Being one in heart with our friends, their family members and those who support us, we will go forward step by step, albeit slowly," he said. Addressing the ceremony at the site, one of the bereaved family members present read out a message, saying, "We have no choice but to keep living with these feelings of sadness and loneliness." The ceremony was not open to the media at the request of the company, known internationally for producing a number of popular animation works such as "K-On!" and "The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya." The company, often referred to as KyoAni at home and abroad, released a memorial video clip that showed condolence messages on its YouTube account at 10:30 a.m., the time of the arson attack, which also left 33 people injured.

One week after arson attack on Kyoto Animation studio, police finish identifying all 34 victims

The Japan Times

KYOTO - The Kyoto Prefectural Police have finished identifying all 34 of the people killed in last week's arson attack on a Kyoto Animation Co. studio through DNA tests and plan to reveal their names soon, investigative sources said Thursday. The 34 staff members of the company, also known as KyoAni, died after Shinji Aoba, 41, allegedly spread gasoline in the building and set the three-story structure ablaze in Kyoto's Fushimi Ward at around 10:30 a.m. on July 18. The victims ranged in age from their 20s to 60s and about half of them were in their 20s and 30s, according to the police. Some were severely burned, police said, adding that they are taking steps to return the remains to the families. Police are in discussions with Kyoto Animation about when and how to reveal the identities of the deceased, they said.

One month after arson attack, support for Kyoto Animation at home, overseas, still spreading

The Japan Times

KYOTO – About a month after the deadly arson attack, the circle of support for Kyoto Animation Co. has spread to individuals and businesses from within and outside of Japan, with many offering words of encouragement and donations to the company. Sunday marks one month after the July 18 attack on the company's No. 1 studio in the city of Kyoto, which left 35 people dead and dozens of others injured. On Saturday, many fans flocked to an altar for flowers near the site, which was set up again Friday after being temporarily removed due to an approaching typhoon. According to a lawyer representing the company, a total of some ¥1.96 billion had been deposited as of Tuesday into a dedicated account set up by Kyoto Animation, known as KyoAni, for donations. The sum is composed of deposits from individuals, as well as donations collected by other companies and groups, including ¥249 million gathered at Tokyo-based anime-related goods retailer Animate's 119 outlets located both inside and outside of the country.

At least 33 people dead, dozens injured in suspected arson at Kyoto Animation studio

The Japan Times

KYOTO - A suspected arson attack on an animation production company in Kyoto left at least 33 people dead and dozens injured Thursday. The death toll is the highest for an arson incident since 1989, when the previous Heisei Era (1989-2019) started, according to police. Police said some people witnessed a man screaming "Die!" as he set the fire at a studio of Kyoto Animation Co. Police also found knives at the scene. The suspect, 41, who was also injured, was taken to a local hospital. According to investigative sources on Friday, the suspect said he set the studio fire on the studio because it "stole a novel."