His Excellency Shinzo ABE
Prime Minister of Japan
The Hague, 8 December 2015
Subject: Solidarity and comfort for the refugees now and then.
During the last G 20 meeting you expressed solidarity and offered comfort to the French people after the acts of terror in Paris. You made it clear that these acts of terror challenge the values our democracies share and protect. However what worth has this statement coming from Japan?
Japan’s substantial financial contributions to the UNHCR are not sufficient to give worth to your statement. In coping with the global refugee’s problem from war torn areas more than money is required. This includes but is not limited to allow refugees to come to Japan. At home it may look politically prudent to close Japan’s borders to refugees. The refugee problem is however a global one. In not allowing refugees into Japan demonstrates a lack of true commitment. It does not match Japan’s long term interests as a nation respecting the UN Charter and accepting executive responsibility in the changing world.
In my previous petition I mentioned that the Dutch Government is coming around to accepting its moral obligation to those Dutch from Dutch East Indies who are still alive. Recently the Dutch Minister President Mr. Mark Rutte had a discussion with you concerning the relationship between our two countries. According to the statement issued much was discussed about commerce, culture and co-operation, but very little about the Pacific War past. It was a disappointment that in referring to the past only the Peace Exchange Programme was mentioned without referring to the continuing efforts of the Foundation of Japanese Honorary Debts through dialogue with your Ambassador in The Hague to resolve Japan’s moral commitments. The annual Peace Exchange Programme involves only around 10 victims of the Japanese Military occupation of Dutch East Indies whilst there are still around 50,000 victims alive. It would be better if the frivolously spent money on a nominal 10 victims is used to compensate all those, who as a result of the Japanese occupation, lost but all, became refugees and suffer daily from the terror and brutal treatment inside and outside the Japanese concentration camps.
On behalf of the Foundation of Japanese Honorary Debts.
J.F. van Wagtendonk