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December 9, 2006

China-Japan Friendship Association Delegates and SGI President Discuss Bilateral Friendship

Mr. Ikeda (foreground, left) meets with Mr. Song (foreground, right)

On December 9, 2006, President Song Jian of the China-Japan Friendship Association (CJFA), China, and his party were warmly received by SGI President Daisaku Ikeda, Soka Gakkai President Minoru Harada, and Soka Gakkai youth representatives at Soka Gakkai's Tokyo Makiguchi Memorial Hall in Hachioji, Tokyo. In a two-hour discussion, Mr. Song and Mr. Ikeda shared their vision for a new era of Sino-Japan friendship to commemorate the 35th anniversary in 2007 of the normalization of diplomatic relations between their countries.

Mr. Song thanked Mr. Ikeda for spearheading efforts to mend and strengthen bilateral friendship during the past 30 some years. Thanking the Chinese leader for his warm words, Mr. Ikeda expressed his conviction that Sino-Japan friendship must be safeguarded at all costs, as without it there can be no genuine happiness or world peace.

During their meeting, Mr.Ikeda introduced several events that will be sponsored by Soka Gakkai affiliates to celebrate the 35th anniversary of normalization of Sino-Japan relations, such as the Min-On Concert Association's invitation to the Chinese Acrobatic Troupe to tour Japan in autumn 2007. In 2008, the Tokyo Fuji Art Museum will organize an exhibition on the Chinese classic, Romance of the Three Kingdoms, in commemoration of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games.

Mr. Song and Mr. Ikeda discussed their fond memories of Zhou Enlai, the prominent role women play in China and the future of bilateral exchanges in education and culture. Present at the meeting were: CJFA Vice President Jing Dunquan, Secretary-General Xu Jianping, Vice Secretary-General Yuan Mindao of the China-Japan Friendship Association; Tatsumi Murakami of the Japan-China Friendship Center; Counsellor Sun Meijiao and Second Secretary Qiao Lun from the Chinese embassy in Tokyo; Soka University President Masami Wakae; and Soka Women's College President Katsuhiko Fukushima.

[Adapted from an article in the December 10, 2006, issue of the Seikyo Shimbun, Soka Gakkai, Japan]