Ex-Japanese consul Sugihara's son to visit Lithuania

  • 2020-02-19
  • BNS/TBT Staff

VILNIUS – Nobuki Sugihara, a son of Chiune Sugihara, a Japanese diplomat who saved thousands of Lithuanian Jews from the Holocaust during World War Two, is coming to Lithuania to honor the memory of his father, alongside a delegation led by a special adviser for the Japanese prime minister.

On Wednesday, the guests will be received by Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda and First Lady Diana Nausediene. On Thursday, an exhibition to mark Sugihara's 120th birth anniversary and the 80th anniversary of the issuance of visas for life will be unveiled at the Lithuanian parliament.

The Japanese delegation to Lithuania will include around 200 people and they will arrive on a special flight named "the friendship flight", initiated by the Lithuanian honorary consul, the Lithuanian presidential office said.

The Lithuanian Seimas declared 2020 the year of Chiune Sugihara as the country marks the 80th anniversary of his activity in Lithuania's second-largest city of Kaunas as well as his 120th birth anniversary.

Japan's Vice-Consul Sugihara lived in Kaunas between 1939 and 1940. In cooperation with Dutch Honorary Consul Jan Zwartendijk, he issued thousands of "visas for life", thus helping at least 6,000 Jews to escape the Holocaust.

Sugihara died in Japan in 1986.