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Japan Ambassador meets Japanese veteran families in Vietnam

Valerie Mai Valerie Mai

mnghonganh@gmail.com

April 19, 2021 | 08:00

Japan Ambassador to Vietnam Yamada Takio and his wife have invited 38 family members of Japanese veterans in Vietnam to attend an intimate meeting at his house.

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Japan Ambassador meets Japanese veteran families in Vietnam
Japan Ambassador to Vietnam Yamada Takio and his wife have invited 38 family members of Japanese veterans in Vietnam to attend an intimate meeting at his house.

Among 38 family members of Japanese veterans in Vietnam who attended the meeting, 8 joined the exchange event with families of Japanese veterans for the first time. The meeting took place in a joyful and warm atmosphere, contributing to creating a new link among the families of Japanese veterans in Vietnam, who have a close connection to their motherland.

In his remark at the meeting, Ambassador Yamada Takio said that since the beginning of his term in Vietnam, he was told the story of Japanese veteran families in Vietnam. He was looking forward to meeting everyone soon. However, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, it took the ambassador almost a year to fulfill this wish.

"When the Emperor and Empress of Japan officially visited Vietnam for the first time in March 2017, you had the opportunity to meet them, who are now the former Emperor and Empress. At that time, they had a conversation with each family of Japanese veterans, I think that meeting, though short, left extremely precious moments, brought back a lot of unforgettable memories in the families of Japanese veterans in Vietnam, and I also heard from translator Kamitani that those were very emotional moments."

Japan Ambassador meets Japanese veteran families in Vietnam
Prior to the meeting, Japanese veteran families had met the Former Emperor and the Empress of Japan on their first state visit to Vietnam in 2017 as Japanese Emperor and the Empress.

"You also had the opportunity to visit Japan in October 2017. This was the first visit to the fatherland for most of you. I learned that during this visit, there were many emotional moments. Some families were lucky enough to find and visit their father's graves. There were families who brought their fathers' ashes to Vietnam. You also have a chance to visit the Imperial Palace of Japan as well as the port of Maizuru, where your fathers first set foot in when returning to Japan from Vietnam," the Ambassador shared.

The Ambassador said that Vietnam was the last overseas travel destination for the Former Emperor and Empress as Emperor and Empress of Japan. They wrote poems about her visit to Vietnam and commemorated the meeting with Japanese veterans after returning to Japan. Vietnam's State President and his wife are also the last foreign guests that the Former Emperor and Empress received in Japan when they were in office. This shows the great respect of Japan's Former Emperor and Empress towards Vietnam.

The Ambassador also hoped that the meeting would contribute to tightening the relations among Japanese veteran families in Vietnam, as well as continuing to deepen the bond between them and Japan.

Prior to the meeting, Japanese veteran families had met the Former Emperor and the Empress of Japan on their first state visit to Vietnam in 2017 as Japanese Emperor and the Empress. Also in October 2017, with the support from the Japan Foundation, Japanese veteran families had the opportunity to visit Japan - their fatherland. During this visit, some families were fortunate to find and visit their fathers' graves.

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Valerie Mai