Lawmaker makes statement on Nanjing Massacre

By Na Li in Toronto | China Daily USA | Updated: 2017-12-01 11:11

Lawmaker makes statement on Nanjing Massacre

Jenny Kwan, member of the provincial caucus of the New Democratic Party (NDP)

Jenny Kwan, member of the provincial caucus of the New Democratic Party (NDP), made an open statement in Ottawa on Thursday on the Nanjing Massacre and other Japanese atrocities committed during World War II.

It was the first time a Canadian lawmaker delivered such a statement on Parliament Hill.

This year marks the 80th anniversary of the Nanjing Massacre, also known as the Rape of Nanking in the West.

"Eighty years ago, Imperial Japanese Army Forces raped an estimated 20,000 to 80,000 Chinese women and girls, and some 300,000 people were killed," Kwan said in the statement. "Western eyewitnesses in Nanjing described the atrocities as 'Hell on Earth.'"

The Canadian provinces of Ontario, Manitoba, Alberta and British Columbia will hold events to mark Nanjing Massacre Commemorative Day on Dec 13, she said.

Kwan also spoke about the crimes committed against female war victims in Asia, who were forced into sexual slavery as "comfort women" by Japanese troops during World War II.

"After the Nanjing Massacre, the military sexual slavery system for the Japanese military expanded rapidly," she said. "Some 200,000 women from Korea, Philippines, China, Burma, Indonesia and other Japanese occupied territories were tricked, kidnapped or coerced to work in brothels to serve as 'comfort women' to the Imperial Japanese Army."

According to Kwan, documents on the Nanjing Massacre were included in the UNESCO Memory of the World Register.

Thekla Lit of BC ALPHA (Association for Learning & Preserving the History of WW II in Asia) has worked with the British Columbia NDP government and developed a resource guide, including the Rape of Nanjing.

"Thank you Canada ALPHA for your dedication in ensuring that Canadians remember and learn from this history," Kwan concluded.

Last month, the Ontario Provincial Parliament passed a motion designating Dec 13 as Nanjing Massacre Commemorative Day to commemorate the mass killing of 300,000 Chinese by Japanese troops.

The parliament of Ontario, home to Canada's largest Asian community with more than 3 million of Asian descent, became the first regional legislature in a Western country to adopt the motion.

Manitoba joined a growing movement in Canada to recognize and commemorate the Nanjing Massacre, with a motion of this kind passing its second reading with unanimous consent in its legislature.

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