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Hello Kitty-themed Tokyo amusement park shut after threat

TOKYO (AFP) – A popular Hello Kitty-themed amusement park in Japan closed for the day yesterday after receiving an “e-mail threatening terrorism”, its operator said.

Sanrio Puroland in the capital Tokyo is known for its rides, shows and cutesy cartoon mascots including the beloved feline-like heroine.

“We decided to temporarily close for the day because the safety of visitors, performers and staff cannot be guaranteed at the moment,” the indoor theme park said in a message on its website.

“On February 24, we received an email threatening terrorism,” it added. The unspecified threat prompted police to scour Sanrio Puroland for suspicious objects, but none were found, public broadcaster NHK reported.

Authorities were trying to identify the sender of the email, NHK added, citing unnamed police sources.

Tokyo-based Sanrio created the ubiquitous pink-bowed character Hello Kitty in 1974, and opened the Sanrio Puroland theme park in Tama City, Tokyo in 1990.