Statement by Takahashi Reiichiro Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to Australia

 It has been 75 years since Japan was defeated in the Second World War. The war created enormous suffering both domestically and abroad. This must never be forgotten.
 We shall also never forget those nations and peoples who made every effort to achieve reconciliation in the War’s aftermath, and we appreciate the spirit of tolerance and friendship that Australia has shown to Japan. The positive, friendly post-war relationship that Japan and Australia share today is vast in its scope, encompassing not only the economy, but also cultural exchanges, as well as political relationships and defence co-operation. You will recall that in 2018, Prime Minister Abe stood next to Prime Minister Morrison as both leaders laid wreaths at the War Memorial Cenotaph in Darwin. This event stands as a fitting testament to the reconciliation between our nations.
 We have the great responsibility to take the lessons of history deeply into our hearts, to carve out a better future. For over 20 years the Government of Japan has hosted a visit program for former Australian POWs and their families. This has been expanded to include their offspring in order to further their understanding of modern Japan. Younger generations play such an important role in ensuring progress comes to pass. We will foster interaction between the younger generations of Japan and Australia, upon whose shoulders rests the future of our relationship.