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Japan Summit and Leadership Conference Convened in Nagoya

Japan-2019-10-05-First Japan Summit and Leadership Conference Convened in Nagoya

Nagoya, Japan—UPF convened the inaugural Japan Summit and Leadership Conference (JSLC) on October 5, 2019, at the Hotel Nagoya Castle in Nagoya city, Aichi prefecture. Seven hundred and fifty political, religious, civil society, media and academic leaders and representatives from Korea, the U.S., Taiwan and other countries around the world gathered for the one-day conference, whose theme was “Pacific Civilization Era – Peace in East Asia and Prospects for Japan-Korea-U.S. Cooperation.”

Opening Plenary

The opening plenary of the JSLC 2019 began with a video about the worldwide activities of UPF, which was followed by prayers, offered by four religious leaders representing Christianity, Islam, Buddhism and Shinto.

On behalf of the organizers, UPF-Japan President Mr. Masayoshi Kajikuri gave the welcoming address, in which he expressed his hopes for the summit. He said civilization has shifted from the Atlantic Era to the Pacific Era, and that “From the perspective of human history, Japan, Korea and the U.S. share the important mission of establishing a civilization of peace. This summit will be a truly meaningful one in the history of mankind.”

Speeches by key figures from Japan, Korea and the U.S. followed. A member of the Japanese Diet said he was grateful that amidst the declining relationship between Japan and Korea, the summit was being held to strengthen cooperation between Japan, Korea and the U.S. He also praised the efforts of UPF co-founder Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon for trying to resolve environmental issues from the aspect of science, pointing out that she resumed the International Conference for the Unity of the Sciences (ICUS) for the first time in 17 years.

Representing Korea was Hon. Kim Gyuhwan who spoke about the activities UPF co-founders Rev. Sun Myung Moon and Dr. Moon have carried out around the world. He commented: “There are many people who talk about peace, but Dr. Moon is taking concrete measures, planting the seeds and harvesting the fruits for the realization of world peace.”

Hon. Andy Biggs, a member of the U.S. House of Representatives, said that although world peace may seem like a distant dream, good men and good women were created to want peace, and together we should believe in God and find God’s love to realize God’s wish.

After the three speeches, the guest of honor, former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Newt Gingrich gave a keynote address. He pointed out that although the international community has been making various efforts to achieve world peace since the end of World War II, peace has been transient, and that the social system itself is fragile. He said it is important to find ways to build peace through dialogue so that our descendants can live safe and abundant lives.

Hon. Gingrich also applauded the foresight of Dr. Moon for her reaching out in Africa, where the population is increasing, and around the world through summits and initiatives. He concluded by saying that he hopes the participants of the summit can put their heads together to bring about a project that can solve regional and global issues, and expressed his hopes about the future activities of UPF.

A Japanese lawmaker also gave a keynote address and said that reflection on the two World Wars has not been able to bring peace to the world. He especially noted that there are many points concerning the current relationship between Japan and Korea that need to be considered seriously, and that it is essential the relationship is restored. He said both countries must free themselves from past ideas and need to talk to each other in a future-oriented manner.

Next, after being introduced by a member of the Japanese Diet, Dr. Moon was welcomed to the stage with a full round of applause to deliver a keynote address.

Dr. Moon said that the truth of history must be revealed. She pointed out the limitations of a world created centered on human beings, and spoke about God's painful heart looking at such a world. She emphasized people must change in order to realize the world of peace that humanity desires.

Dr. Moon also mentioned that politics and religion must unite, and that politicians must become owners that guide the people with a parental heart, listening to God's voice, and knowing God's dreams and wishes. She spoke about the responsibility and attitude we should have towards the worsening global environmental issues.

Through Dr. Moon’s address, participants were able to reconfirm the necessity to strengthen the cooperation of the Asia-Pacific community in the Pacific Civilization Era and also warned about the changes brought by power and nationalism which can be seen in the world today. On this foundation, the Nagoya Declaration, which advocates making efforts to create a global peace civilization of interdependence, mutual prosperity and universal values with Japan, Korea and the U.S. as its axis, was adopted and then signed by the various leaders and representatives who participated in the summit.

Session 1

The theme for Session 1 was "Peace in East Asia and Prospects for Japan-Korea-U.S. Cooperation." The session began with the moderator, Dr. Kazuo Takahashi, who is an advisor to the Library of Alexandria (in Egypt) and a former professor of the International Christian University in Japan, explaining the purpose of the session. He mentioned it is an honor for Japan to be able to offer an opportunity to discuss the future of the international community at this time of world chaos. Afterwards, panelists from Japan, Korea, the U.S. and Nepal gave speeches. The panelist from Japan, a member of the Japanese Diet, said that the Cold War has not ended yet, and explained the threat of communism. He emphasized a strong alliance between Japan, Korea and the U.S. is crucial from both military and civilization aspects, noting how North Korea is expanding its military power.

Hon. Myung-chul Cho, a former member of the National Assembly of Korea, remarked that a collaborative relationship between China and Russia has formed and become large in scale in recent years and that they are also strengthening their pipe with North Korea, while the alliance between Japan, Korea and the U.S., who supposedly share the same values of freedom and democracy, is not centered on these principles anymore and has become a businesslike relationship. He warned that the presence of the U.S. in the world is becoming weaker, and the order of security in East Asia is collapsing. He also emphasized that this should not just be left to politicians to solve, but needs to be developed into a national movement.

Hon. Ted Yoho, member of the U.S. House of Representatives, expressed concern that cooperation among countries that do not believe in freedom is expanding, and pointed out western democracy is facing challenges. He emphasized the value of freedom and democracy centered on God.

H.E. Parmanand Jha, the first vice president of Nepal, praised the global activities of UPF. He mentioned that in order to realize a peaceful world, participation from private and religious organizations should also be welcomed. He also noted the importance of the values that UPF has to offer, the values of living for others and caring for family.

During the question-and-answer part of the session, the participants asked questions such as: "How should South Korea and North Korea be unified?," "How will the United States talk with North Korea in order to bring about a free and open Pacific era?," and “What is true democracy?”

Dr. Takahashi closed the session, saying, "According to statistics, in the near future, four of the five leading economies of the world will be in Asia. The Asia-Pacific region needs to come up with the answers to a new civilization, and Japan, Korea and the U.S. should closely collaborate and lead this new civilization."

Session 2

The theme for Session 2 was “Declining Birthrate and Multicultural Society: Restoring Family, Vitalizing Society.”

First, Hon. Hiroko Oizumi, director of Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance Welfare Foundation and a former member of the Japan House of Representatives, the lower house of the Diet, gave a presentation on the “Issues and Prospects of the Policies Against the Declining Birthrate in Japan.” Hon. Oizumi explained the background behind Japan’s policy to address the declining birth rate, and pointed out its problems. She said: “We have to stop thinking the declining birth rate issue is a childcare policy issue, and [see that it] needs to be dealt with as a social policy issue that involves all ministries and agencies.” “Since marriage is correlated with academic background, bringing down the starting school age to five will have a positive impact on Japan’s demographic structure."

Dr. Ji Choong Nam, a research professor at the Department of Global Diaspora Studies in Chonnam National University in Korea, gave a presentation on the “Current Status and Challenges of the Declining Birthrate in South Korea.” He explained that Korea's total fertility rate is currently below one and pointed out negative values about marriage, such as economic stagnation, women's entry into society, and men's lack of cooperation in housework, are spreading in society. Dr. Ji noted the effectiveness of multicultural marriages and international marriages as one way to solve the problem of the declining birth rate.

Ms. Chiyoe Yamamoto, president of the National Support Center for Family Education commented that “Raising children, which should be disseminated through culture, has become something that involves risks.” And, that “It is necessary to relearn that raising children is fun.”

Cardinal Kelvin Felix from the Roman Catholic Church in Dominica quoted the Bible and emphasized the importance of family, stating that the family is the school of love and that parents are the first teachers. He said it is a blessing to have and to raise children, and highly praised Rev. Moon and Dr. Moon’s true family movement and marriage blessings based on true love.

The moderator of the session, Prof. Sai Kurasawa, former professor of Rikkyo University in Japan, presented the participants with the question: “What is happiness?” and wrapped up the session saying, “Until today, Japan was a company-first, work-first society. We must convert this into a family-based social system.”

Dinner Banquet

After the two sessions, a banquet was held with Dr. Moon as the main guest.

Family Federation for World Peace and Unification (FFWPU)-Japan President Mr. Eiji Tokuno gave a speech on behalf of the hosting organization. He welcomed the various leaders and representatives who came to Japan from abroad, and then reported on the press conference held in between the sessions of the summit, at which the laureates of the 2020 Sunhak Peace Prize, the fourth edition of the awards, were announced.

The banquet proceeded in a friendly atmosphere. Traditional Japanese music and songs and the Korean folk song Arirang were performed on a Koto, a traditional Japanese harp.

Leaders from Japan, Korea and the U.S. gave their impressions on the summit. Hon. Matt Salmon, a former member of the U.S. House of Representatives, who served as chair of the House’s Committee on Foreign Affairs, Subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific, said anything can be achieved if we have a unified goal, and that we should not be overwhelmed by our differences.

Hon. Jung Tae-ik, the honorary chairman of the Korean Council on Foreign Relations, spoke about the possibility of a submarine tunnel between Japan and South Korea as a project that can foster friendship between the two countries and said, "We need people who will realize Dr. Hak Ja Han’s vision. Let us be the pioneers in achieving that vision."

The banquet concluded with a joint performance by the Little Angels Children’s Folk Ballet of Korea and the Sunhak Children’s Choir. They sang songs from both Japan and Korea, creating an atmosphere of friendship between the two countries.

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