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HOME  > Past issues  > 2016 August 31 - September 6  > Antiracists pay tribute to Korean victims of 1923 massacre in Tokyo
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2016 August 31 - September 6 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

Antiracists pay tribute to Korean victims of 1923 massacre in Tokyo

September 2, 2016
A memorial service took place on September 1 in Tokyo to pay tribute to Korean victims killed in a massacre following the Great Kanto Earthquake 93 years ago.

About 200 attendees mourned for the victims and pledged to work to help bring about true peace and stability in Asia. Japanese Communist Party member of the Tokyo Metropolitan Assembly Azegami Miwako also took part in the ceremony.

A major earthquake on September 1, 1923 hit a vast area of the Kanto region. It is said that the disaster affected about 1.9 million people, causing more than 105,000 people to die or go missing. Following the big quake, false rumors such as, “Koreans have poisoned wells,” were spread. As a result, more than 6,700 innocent Koreans and Chinese are said to have been slaughtered by Japanese soldiers, police and vigilante groups.

Yoshida Hironori, an executive of a Japanese organization working to deepen mutual friendship and understanding between Japanese and Koreans (Niccho-Kyokai), said in his greeting, “The occurrence of the massacre is a fact that has already been confirmed in historical studies. In order to remember this incident and never allow such an incident to happen again, our organization has been carrying out activities.”

JCP assemblyperson Azegami made a speech at the service and said, “Any country should straightforwardly face up to its past history and admit to past mistakes or tragedies. Only after reflecting upon its wrongdoing can it pass lessons on to the future generations.”

A 30-year-old woman after the ceremony ended said, “People may know something about the Great Kanto Earthquake but not about the mass-killing of Koreans. I’d like to inform as many people as possible about this tragedy.”

Past related articles:
> Memorial ceremony held for foreign victims of massacre that occurred 92 years ago [September 2, 2015]
> Hidden history behind 1923 quake: communists killed by power [September 4, 2013]
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