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Agenda for a new Japan (International Dialogue on the theme `An Agenda for Reconciliation and Kyosei - living and working together for the common good').

An International Dialogue on the theme `an Agenda for Reconciliation and Kyosei (living and working together for the common good)' took place in Tokyo on 20 May. It was co-hosted by the Keisai Koho Center of the `Keidanren' Economic Federation, Ozaki Memorial Foundation and MRA.

The event was part of the build-up to the symposium, `An Agenda for Reconciliation towards the 21st Century' which will take place in August as part of the 50th anniversary conference of the MRA centre at Caux, Switzerland.

Tsutomu Hata, a former Prime Minister, stressed the importance of facing history squarely and learning the real causes of World War II--and of making sincere apologies where appropriate. He paid tribute to the way in which Nobusuke Kishi, as conservative Prime Minister, had changed government policy in response to questions by socialist Senator Shidzue Kato. This had helped to break the deadlock in talks to normalize relations between Japan and Korea. He also spoke of apologies Kishi had made during visits to Asia and the Pacific in 1957.

Even as Prime Minister, Hata admitted, he had not known of these apologies.

Referring to the imaginative Norwegian initiative to bring Israel and the PLO closer, Hata said that Japan should do more to bring about reconciliation between people, and prevent conflicts.

Popular Diet member Yukio Hatoyama spoke about the urgent need for politicians to return to ethical and spiritual values, in order to regain the trust of the public. Fraternity and love were his two fundamental philosophies. `To achieve this, one has to develop one's own human dignity and self-confidence which can cope with vexed interests and also accept others' opinions,' he said. He urged Japan to take the lead in helping the international community solve problems that threaten human security.

Other speakers included Maarten Wevers, New Zealand Ambassador to Japan; Ryuzaburo Kaku, Chairman of Canon Inc; Marcel Grandy, President of the Caux Foundation; Yoichiro Ichioka, Director and chief editorial writer of Nikkei; and Shinyasu Hoshino, the President of the National Institute for Research Advancement (NIRA).
COPYRIGHT 1996 For A Change
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Copyright 1996, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Author:Yukihisa Fujita
Publication:For A Change
Date:Aug 1, 1996
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