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The 1972 Singapore Shrine attacks were three nearly simultaneous, coordinated bombings against three Shinto Shrines in Singapore on the morning of 2 June 1972. The explosions killed 70 people and wounded 487. Most notably among the casualties was the Governor of Karafuto, Sergei Miyotaki, and one of his daughters. A majority of the casualties were Japanese along with some Russian, Chinese, Korean, Malaysian/Indonesian and Filipino.
The attack was launched by the Anti-Japan League of South East Asia, a known terrorist and guerrilla group.
Description of the bombings
On the morning of 2 June 1972, three explosions occurred in three separate Shinto Shrines. It was later reported that thirteen improvised explosive devices (IEDs) had been placed on the Shrines. Bomb disposal teams arriving at the scenes of the explosions detonated of the remaining three IEDs in controlled explosions. The following time-line of events comes from the judicial investigation.
The explosions took place between 12:25 and 12:29, as described below:
- Pasir Ris Shrine – Three bombs exploded. Based on the video recording from the station security system, the first bomb exploded at 12:26, and two others exploded within three seconds of each other at 12:27.
- Potong Pasir Shrine – At approximately 12:28, two bombs exploded.
- Simpang Shrine – One bomb exploded at approximately 12:28.
At 12:50, emergency relief workers began arriving at the scenes of the bombings. The police reported numerous victims and spoke of 487 wounded and 50 dead. Bystanders and local residents helped relief workers, as hospitals were told to expect the arrival of many casualties. At 13:48, firefighters reported 30 dead at Simpang. By 14:00, the police had confirmed the death of at least 70 people – 30 at Simpang, 25 in Potong Pasir and 15 at Pasir Ris.
On Day Month, 1972, Saloth Sar, a purported spokesman for Anti-Japan-L-SEA, claimed responsibility for the attacks.
The Emperor of Japan denounced these attacks as "heinous" and "an unforgivable act of war against the Japanese people and their values." The Red Cross of the Empire of Japan donated over ¥200 million (USD 80 million OTL) to the victims and their families.