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December 16, 2007

Russian Academy of Arts Awards SGI President Honorary Membership

Mr. Fatkulin (right) presents the certificate to Mr. Ikeda (left)

Mr. Fatkulin (right) presents the certificate to Mr. Ikeda (left)

On December 16, 2007, the Russian Academy of Arts (RAA) presented SGI President Daisaku Ikeda with an honorary membership at a ceremony held at the Tokyo Makiguchi Memorial Hall in Hachioji, Tokyo, on the occasion of the 4th Nationwide Youth Division Leaders' Meeting. Masut M. Fatkulin, chair of the International Confederation of Artists' Unions Executive Committee, nominated Mr. Ikeda for the honorary membership. The Academy Assembly gave its unanimous approval. Mr. Ikeda was being recognized for his contributions toward strengthening ties of friendship between Russia and Japan, through his photography, in particular. RAA President Zurab K. Tsereteli sent a video message for the ceremony.

The RAA is an acclaimed art institute with roots in the Academy of Three Noble Arts, established in November 1757 by a Senate Edict during the reign of Empress Elizabeth Petrovna (1709-1762). The Academy brought to fruition her father Peter the Great's (1672-1725) ardent desire to create a Russian school of arts. Today, the president of the Russian Federation has designated the RAA as one of the nation's most prestigious cultural institutions with a mission of promoting the development of Russian fine arts.

[Adapted from an article in the December 17, 2007, issue of the Seikyo Shimbun, Soka Gakkai, Japan]