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Canadians to honor Nanjing victims

By Cang Wei in Nanjing and Wang Xin in Beijing | China Daily | Updated: 2018-06-26 09:15

Guan Huizhen, a Chinese Canadian congress member, and the team supporting her for establishing the monument pose together in Toronto, June 21, 2018. [Photo provided by Wang Haicheng]

A Nanjing Massacre Victims Monument will be established in Richmond Hill, Canada, by the end of the year to remember the deceased and call for world peace.

The book-shaped monument will cover an area of 90 square meters in the community outside Toronto. It will be 3.72 meters high, 4.88 meters long and 9.2 meters wide. Black marble or granite will be used to symbolize the heavy losses and tragic time in human history.

The Chinese Canadian communities, including the Confederation of Toronto Chinese Canadian Organizations, Chinese Freemasons of Canada (Toronto) and Nanjing Association of Canada, joined to raise money and for construction work.

Wang Haicheng, president of the Nanjing Association of Canada, said construction of the monument will be completed before the Nanjing Massacre Commemorative Day this year, which falls on Dec 13, if the fundraising goes well.

"Most Westerners only know about the massacres against Jewish people," Wang said. "They know little about the Nanjing Massacre and the atrocities committed by the Japanese army in China during World War II."

"Publicizing the Nanjing Massacre to people in Canada will help maintain a lasting world peace. The Chinese Canadian communities are the most enthusiastic to publicize the Nanjing Massacre to people living in Canada."

Lin Xingyong, president of the Confederation of Toronto Chinese Canadian Organizations, said the Nanjing Massacre is the eternal pain in China's heart, according to Xinhua News Agency.

Lin said it is a tragedy for Chinese and the humiliation of humanity, adding that the monument is meant to give more people a better understanding of the Japanese invaders' atrocities against humanity and to cherish peace.

On Dec 13, 1937, the Japanese army occupied Nanjing, which at the time was the country's capital, and killed more than 300,000 Chinese civilians and disarmed soldiers in the following six weeks.

According to Wang, another important mission the Chinese Canadian communities have is to get more support for the motion initiated by Member of Parliament Jenny Kwan of the New Democratic Party to call on the Canadian government to proclaim Dec 13 as Nanjing Massacre Commemorative Day.

In December 2016, the motion passed in the Toronto City Council to recognize the Nanjing Massacre as a historic event.

"We also plan to establish a World War II Asian Memorial Museum in Canada," Wang said. "We have collected about 1,000 relics and more than 2,000 pictures related to the massacre. Our workers have been cooperating with many museums on the Chinese mainland, which fully support our work and will exchange relics with us."

In 2017, he helped organize 80 Chinese communities to hold memorial activities in many countries about Nanjing Massacre Commemorative Day, including those in North America, Europe and Asia.

Wang said Chinese Canadian communities will organize similar commemorative activities this year.

Contact the writers at cangwei@chinadaily.com.cn

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