January 9, 2013
The Japanese Embassy in Kuala Lumpur never confirmed RM207 billion was paid
The Japanese embassy in Kuala Lumpur has today (January 8) denied that it confirmed the RM207 billion was paid out by their government to Malaysia as compensation for the victims of the ‘Death Railway project’ which ran from Thailand to Burma.
In a statement sent by the embassy at Jalan Tun Razak, second secretary Takaharu Suegami said the matter was outside the involvement and knowledge of the Japanese government.
“We must remind you that the embassy has never confirmed that RM207 billion was paid to the Malaysian government as compensation to the victims,” he said.
A copy of the letter was sent to Harakah Daily editor-in-chief Ahmad Lutfi Othman, and was faxed to Malaysiakini today, where Takaharu referred to the two articles carried by the PAS mouthpiece titled ‘Embassy confirms huge compensation paid to Malaysian government’ on January 3 and ‘Embassy clarifies report on death railway’ which appeared yesterday.
Suegami referred to the Second World War as “unhappy events” and that war compensation on the matter had been fully and finally settled under the San Francisco Treaty which entered into force in 1952.
“Furthermore, for your reference, there is the September 21, 1967 agreement between Japan and Malaysia where in order to promote economic cooperation, Japan agreed to supply grants to Malaysia of the products and services of Japan to the total value of RM25 million.
“The necessary arrangements for its implementation were already conducted by the two governments and in the agreement, the Malaysian government has agreed that all questions arising from the ‘unhappy events’ during World War II which may affect the existing good relations between the two countries were settled,” he said.
The second secretary added that all the supplies in accordance with the agreement were completed on May 6, 1972.
He further said that Japan has always engraved deep remorse and apologised for the damage and suffering caused in the past through its colonial rule and aggression to the Asian countries which it had occupied.
“On various occasions, Japan expressed these feelings of remorse and apologised, and its resolve to ensure that such an unfortunate history is never repeated as shown by the statement by the then-Prime Minister Tomiichi Maruyama in 1995,” he said.
“Japan has made utmost efforts to build a future oriented and cooperative relationship with Asian nations and will continuously work to achieve the peace and prosperity of the world in the future as well,” said Suegami.
Previously, Malaysiakini had cited the Harakah Daily report on January 5 where it quoted former Perak Menteri Besar Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin as saying that the amount of RM207 billion had been paid. Opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim was also asked to comment on the issue.