The celebrated humanism of the Japanese people has a reverse side as well.
An article in the Japanese newspaper Asahi created a blast: the newspaper decided to share information regarding the work of the Japanese committee for rendering help to Russia and other countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States.
As it turned out, the committee did not follow through with some 12 billion yens ($100 million) over the period 1998-1999, although the money was allotted to the committee from the state. The newspaper wrote that at least five of those humanitarian projects were not completed (four billion yens or 35 million dollars). Those projects included engineering constructions and apartment buildings in the South Kurile islands in the total sum of 1.6 billion yens, as well as a project for the modernization of the airport in the Russian city of Vladivostok, 500 million yens. The newspaper also wrote that state funds were not completely provided for several projects.
Some 1.5 billion yens were assigned in 1998-1999 to back up the activities of several Japanese centers that were working in Russia, but only 200 million yens were provided. The total sum of such unused money is evaluated in the sum of 7.6 billion yens (about $65 million).
The committee for rendering help to Russia and several other countries was established at the Foreign Ministry of Japan in 1993. This committee was liquidated in April of this year, during the investigation of illegal actions on the part of the former political curator of Tokyo’s diplomacy with Moscow, Muneo Suzuki. This 54-year-old politician was suspected of misappropriating funds that were originally meant to financially help residents of South Kurile islands. Suzuki was eventually charged with bribery.
It is hard to guess the reason of such stinginess, but one thing is clear: Japan is generous when it comes to the restoration of Afghanistan. Japan is reportedly going to allocate about 500 million dollars to Afghanistan withhin the next two years.
Dmitry Chirkin PRAVDA.Ru
Translated by Dmitry Sudakov
On the photo: Muneo Suzuki