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 Documents of the Japanese Government and the Asian Women's Fund
A Request by President of the AWF Murayama to Minister of Foreign Affairs Taro Aso
27 March 2007
To: Mr. Taro Aso, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Japan

The Asian Women’s Fund was established by the Japanese Government in 1995, and for the ensuing 12 years it promoted projects expressing the atonement of the Japanese people to women who were forced to become so-called comfort women, and other projects countering violence faced by women today. A decision was made to dissolve the Fund at the end of March 2007.

During its existence, the Fund worked in collaboration with the Government of Japan to achieve its original objectives. Up until the end, the Government showed a consistently high interest in the Fund’s activities, supported them, and continued to assist them financially, and I hereby state my heartfelt gratitude to the Government for this.

Now that the Asian Women’s Fund will be dissolved, I hereby request the following:

1.It is important that the former comfort women be cared for even after dissolution of the Asian Women’s Fund. In this regard, there are efforts being taken for a newly established private organization to assume some responsibility for this issue. The Fund hereby requests that the Government of Japan provide suitable support for the organization’s activities, which aim to ensure that former comfort women live with few cares for the rest of their lives.

2. It is still important that the Japanese people regard the comfort woman issue as a lesson of history, and we call on the Government to ensure this.

3. Efforts to counter violence against women and ensure women’s human rights must not slacken as a result of the dissolution of the Asian Women’s Fund. We request that the Japanese Government strongly maintain and continue its international efforts toward these goals.

Signed by Tomiichi Murayama President Asian Women’s Fund

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