POW sufferings remembered in Taiwan on 75th anniversary of end of WWII

Taiwan POW Camps Memorial Society organizes series of activities to commemorate end of war

Taiwan News
Date: 2020/08/15
By:  Central News Agency

Remains of old Taipei Prison wall (Flickr, MiNe photo)

A series of activities were held in Taiwan Saturday (Aug. 15) to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II and the sufferings of thousands of prisoners of war (POWs) of the Japanese in Taiwan during that bloody conflict.

The Taiwan POW Camps Memorial Society (TPCMS), dedicated to researching the history of former POW camps in Taiwan during WWII and the stories of their surviving inmates, hosted the 13th Far East Prisoner of War Day event in the Taipei Spot Theatre. More than 60 Taiwanese and people from the foreign community attended the event.

The half-day program included a presentation on allied forces' air raids against Taiwan between 1943 and 1945 by Taiwanese military aviation historian Chang Wei-bin (張維斌), and another presentation on stories of the POWs in Taiwan by Michael Hurst, the TPCMS director. That evening, a memorial service was held for those POWs who perished in the camps, followed by a screening of the American war movie "Empire of the Sun," which tells the story of an American boy living in Shanghai who becomes separated from his parents and ends up in a Japanese POW camp.

On Aug. 15, 1945, Victory over Japan (VJ) Day, Japanese Emperor Hirohito announced the surrender of Japan. The formal surrender document was signed on Sept. 2 of that year. "I am thinking that this could be one of the few actual live gatherings on the 15th of August anywhere in the free world, so we're pretty proud of that," Hurst told CNA, attributing it to the Taiwanese government's good handling of the COVID-19 outbreak, and the cooperation of the Taiwanese people.    [FULL  STORY]

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