Want China Times, Xinhua 2015-07-14
|A representative from the delegation bows to Chinese adoptive parents at |
an event in Harbin, Heilongjiang province, July 21. (Photo/Xinhua)
A delegation of 54 Japanese war orphans visited Harbin, northeast China's Heilongjiang province, on Sunday on a tour to pay tribute to their Chinese adoptive parents who took them in at the end of the Second World War in 1945.
The delegation arrived in China about one month before the 70th anniversary of the end of the Second World War.
Thousands of Japanese children were left behind in China around 1945 when the Second World War was about to end. The children were then taken in and brought up by Chinese families. Most of them returned to Japan after China and Japan normalized their relations in 1972.
For the war orphans, Japan is the motherland, and China is the hometown, said Ikeda Sumie, director general of a Tokyo-based support group for Japanese returning from China.
"As witnesses and survivors of the war, we have the obligation to tell the younger generations about that period of history," Ikeda said.
Cui Zhirong, who adopted a 3-year-old Japanese girl 70 years ago, said she hoped there would be no more war, as it brought pain to people.
Tano Keiko, a war orphan from Japan's Saitama Prefecture, said as a victim of the war herself, she hoped for a lasting peace between China and Japan.