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General Secretary of Japan-Lithuania Friendship Association Hisayuki Sakamizu awarded with Lithuanian Diplomacy Star
On the 18th of December Hisayuki Sakamizu, General Secretary of Japan-Lithuania Friendship Association (JALFA) for his vast contribution to strengthening Japan-Lithuania ties and promoting Lithuania was awarded Lithuanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs award of honour - Lithuanian Diplomacy Star.
„Due to H. Sakamizu and other friends of Lithuania in Japan sincere efforts, cultural diplomacy became a bridge connecting Lithuania and Japan“, - said Violeta Gaižauskaitė, Charge d'Affairs a.i., during the award ceremony at the Embassy of Lithuania in Tokyo.
According to H. Sakamizu, this award marks the longtime contribution of the all JALFA members activity.
JALFA established in 2001 promotes the cultural exchange between the two countries as well as the commemoration of Righteous Among the Nations Chiune Sugihara, a former Japanese diplomat in Kaunas, Lithuania
In 2015 JALFA member, composer Yuki Ando opera „Sempo Sugihara. Cherry Blossoms of Hope“ was firstly premiered in Lithuania. On January 27th, 2018, opera will be performed in Gifu prefecture, Sugihara's homeland.
Japanese friends of Lithuania in cooperation with Lithuanian Embassy greatly assisted in organising choir "Ugnele" tour, Kaunas choir „Varpelis“ concerts in various cities of Japan, workshops of Lithuanian artists M. Lebednykaite and J. Treinyte among many other projects promoting Lithuania in Japan.
The Japanese and Lithuanian choir are preparing joint program dedicated for 100 years Anniversary since the restoration of Lithuanian Statehood.
JALFA also organises charity concerts dedicated to supporting Lithuanian children suffering from oncological diseases. In 2016 two Japanese choirs participated in the charity concert in Lithuania Drama Theatre and Kaunas Musical Theatre in 2017.