Soka Gakkai Fukuoka Celebrates Eighth Anniversary of Korea-Japan Friendship Monument
On May 20, 2007, Soka Gakkai members in Shima, Fukuoka Prefecture, commemorated the eighth anniversary of the Korea-Japan Friendship Monument that was unveiled on May 15, 1999, at the Soka Gakkai Fukuoka Training Center. Local Soka Gakkai members and Korean residents gathered to celebrate. Representatives introduced the history of the monument and Korean-Japanese friendship in Fukuoka.
Director Kim Guan Soob of the Korean Education Center in Fukuoka commented, "I have been inspired by the example of the Soka Gakkai's young people who are learning about the history of both countries (Japan and Korea) and are taking advantage of what they have gained and applying it to present day exchanges between our countries."
The Korea-Japan Friendship Monument was built at the Fukuoka Center at the proposal of SGI President Daisaku Ikeda when he visited Seoul and met with SGI-Korea members in May 1998. The monument is inscribed with Mr. Ikeda's words in both Japanese and Korean, expressing his deep regret for the unfortunate history between Korea and Japan and his hopes for a deepening of friendship and peace. The South Korean counterpart to the Fukuoka center, called the Korea-Japan Friendship Training Center, was established on Cheju Island in November 2002, and the World Peace Monument was unveiled at the site in August 2004. Both the Fukuoka and Cheju centers have served as venues for goodwill exchanges among local Korean residents and Soka Gakkai and SGI-Korea members.
[Adapted from an article in the May 21, 2007 issue of the Seikyo Shimbun, Soka Gakkai, Japan]