Family members of four Japanese people who were reported missing in Taiwan during the 228 Massacre attended a 228 Memorial Foundation ceremony in Hualien yesterday, the first time they had experienced the event, which marked the massacre’s 67th anniversary yesterday.
Akie Aoyama said his father and three other Japanese citizens were visiting Taiwan when his family lost contact with them during the 228 Massacre.
Aoyama filed a compensation request with the foundation in 2011.
Aoyama said his father might have been mistakenly killed by Nationalist forces in Taiwan, otherwise his body would have been found.
Fifteen other people traveled with Aoyama, representing the families of Aoyama’s father’s companions at the time.
“It is spiritually cathartic,” the members said after witnessing their first 228 ceremony yesterday, adding that they “hoped one day the truth would be revealed, and that they would receive an honest answer about what happened to their relatives.”
Foundation secretary-general Liao Chi-pin (廖繼斌) said that of the foreign nationals who claimed to have relatives who were killed in the 228 Massacre, only Aoyama’s family had applied for compensation.
If the application was approved, Aoyama would be eligible for NT$6 million (US$197,958) in compensation, Liao said.
The foundation said that due to a temporary halt on applications, the request was delayed until May last year when it began due process again, adding that the case is now under investigation.
The other members of the party from Japan who claimed to have relatives who were killed in the 228 Massacre have not yet tendered applications for compensation, the foundation said.