Japan inaugurates statue honoring Israeli tsunami aid

Tuesday, February 05, 2013 |  Yossi Aloni

Two years after a massive tsunami ravaged the eastern seaboard of Japan, the people of one of the hardest hit towns, Yanmei-Sanriku, have inaugurated a statue honoring the assistance that Israel provided in their darkest hour.

Titled "Rebirth and Resurrection", the statue was produced by Israeli artist David Susanna, and was installed in front of the municipal offices and temporary Israeli hospitals established in Yanmei-Sanriku.

Immediately after the tsunami hit in 2011, an Israeli medical delegation was dispatched and worked tirelessly to aid the people of the entire Tohoku region. The new sculpture symbolizes Israeli solidarity with the suffering of the Japanese people.

The inauguration was attended by the mayor of Yanmei-Sanriku, numerous other municipal officials, the mayor of a nearby town who initiated contact with the Israelis in the aftermath of the tsunami, representatives of various aid organizations and a large number of school children.

Attendees were treated to a short concert by famed Japanese violinist Nimura, but the highlight of the ceremony was an emotional meeting between Israeli doctors and a Japanese woman whose baby they delivered amidst the devastation two years ago.

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