His Excellency Yoshihide Suga,
Prime Minister of Japan.
The Hague, 13 July 2021
Subject: Review petitions 315 – 319.
In the Netherlands restrictions on the Corona pandemic are partly lifted allowing us to restart our monthly demonstration. The petition addressed to you as Prime Minster of Japan will be handed over in person to his Excellency Hidehisa Horinouchi, the Japanese ambassador in The Hague. During the pandemic we continued to write our petitions, which was handed over to the Japanese Embassy in The Hague. However, we were not able to discus the contents of the petitions with the Ambassador. In presenting current petition we will review with the Ambassador any comment he has received from Tokyo on the forementioned petitions 315-319. Below we address the main contents of these petitions in a nutshell.
Petition 315 of 9 February “Renewal of the dialogue with the Japanese Ambassador”
Now that the Corona pandemic allows us to reopen the dialogue it is opportune moment to review Japan’s willingness to consider the moral aspects of Japan’s war time history in Dutch East Indies.
Petition 316 of 9 March 2021 “Will the resignation of Mr. Yoshiro Mori be the beginning to pay more respect for Comfort Women?”
We are incensed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs statement on their website that the Comfort Women’s issue is based on “false claims that the Comfort Women forcefully were taken away and used as sex slaves.” Many independent investigations conclude the opposite. The Human Rights Council 1996 report by the UN special rapporteur Ms. Radhika Coomaraswamy adopted by Human Rights Council made that noticeably clear.
Petition 317 of 6 April 2021 “Full history of World Heritage Sites of Japan’s Meiji Industrial Revolution.”
It is a shame that the Japanese authorities ignore recommendations and conditions laid down by the World Heritage Committee. The issue concerns deeply as more then 4.000 Dutch POWs were enslaved at the sites during the war. Paying respect is the least Japan can and follow up on the WDC recommendations.
Petition 318 of 11 May 2021 “The meaning of Remembrance Day in the Netherlands for us”
The Dutch remember on the Fourth of May the victims of the wars in Europe, Asia and peace keeping operations at the Dam in Amsterdam. Japan remembers their war victims including war criminals at the Yasukuni Shrine in Tokyo. These convicted Japanese war criminals do not deserve such “honor”. Stop worshipping convicted war criminals Ms. Angela Merkel stated in her remembrance speech. Condemn and dishonor war crimes in accordance with the United Nations Conventions!
Petition 319 8 JUNE 2021. “Why are Japanese concentration camps in Dutch East Indies not an issue in Japan?”
According to Mr. Ian Buruma the Japanese government and people consider the Japanese concentration camps in Dutch East Indies as part of the war and not an issue to be dealt with and to be remembered. This not only a shocking conclusion but explains Japan’s disrespect and lack of consideration of the historic wrongs by the Japanese government and its military during the Pacific war. Japan must recognize this and apologize!
We repeat: In our previous petition we reminded you of the war crimes and the many Japanese military and their aides who were punished by the Military Courts. We sincerely believe that Japan will ultimately be reminded of these war crimes and be obligated to acknowledge them and pay respect to the few survivors and the next of kin of those died. You must agree with the Foundation of Japanese Honorary Debts that a moral review of the past is long overdue. We can not change horrors of the past, but we can together accommodate remorse and respect and accommodate honorably the various points in our petitions. It would be very welcome if the Ambassador is able to react on these petitions.
On behalf of the Foundation of Japanese Honorary Debts.
J.F. van Wagtendonk