Japanese Envoy Expresses Gratitude to JR
The spirit of the San Francisco Peace Treaty rests in reconciliation, fairness and generosity which was eloquently emphasised by J.R. Jayewardene, Japan’s Ambassador to Sri Lanka Akira Sugiyama said on Friday (17). Sugiyama was speaking at a webinar organised by the Embassy, which coincided with Jayewardene’s 115th birth anniversary and to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the San Francisco Peace Conference. He expressed Japan’s gratitude to Jayewardene, who, speaking at San Francisco on 6 September 1951 asked for forgiveness for Japan for its involvement in World War II, whereas the then Soviet Union and its allies were demanding war reparations.
Jayewardene, in his capacity as the then Ceylon’s Finance Minister, represented Sri Lanka at this Conference, which was held to determine the future of Japan. The Ambassador, while expressing “profound” gratefulness of the Japanese people at this event, renewed his firm resolution to further consolidate mutual cooperation and prosperity toward the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Japan and Sri Lanka next year.
Cosmos Scholarship Vice Representative and former Professor at Aoyama Gakuin University, Professor Yoshinori Noguchi, another speaker at this event, said the root of bilateral relations between Japan and Sri Lanka were founded upon the compassion and benevolence expressed in the speech of Jayewardene in San Francisco.
Noguchi, who has authored the book on the courage and compassion at the San Francisco Peace Conference, expounded the impact of the speech at the Peace Conference with Japan’s gratefulness, and cordial relations that have been cultivated in wide-ranging areas, emphasising the importance of the ideal of “coexistence.” Prof. K.D. Paranavitana, a consultant to the J.R. Jayewardene Centre and a former Professor at Rajarata University also addressed this webinar. (PA)