Tokyo sarin attackers, the top members of the Aum Shinrikyo cult, have been executed by the Japanese government, including the cult leader, Asahara. The news became viral in and outside Japan, and the decision rekindled the discussion about the death penalty. The world famous Japanese novelist Haruki Murakami commented that he cannot object to the death penalty in this case, given the harm that was done by the dangerous cult, but he added that he is by principle against the death penalty.
The Aum Shinrikyo cult started with Asahara, the cult leader who amalgamated Buddhist and Christian elements and claimed that he is the reincarnation of the Buddha and Christ. A doom’s day cult, the Aum Shinrikyo cost 13 lives and injured thousands during a Sarin gas attack on the Japanese metro in Tokyo, executed by the cult members. The attack was the deadliest terror attack in Japan to that day.
Justice Minister Yoko Kamikawa said, regarding the attack: “The pain and anguish of the people who were killed and their families as well as of the survivors left with disabilities, was unimaginable.’