The New Taipei City Government yesterday hosted a joint funeral ceremony for 10 people, including two Japanese, whose ashes were scattered at sea about 6km from the city’s Bali District (八里).
The two Japanese were identified by their family names Takahashi and Sato, the New Taipei Department of Civil Affairs said.
The Taiwanese widow of Takahashi, who died in his 70s, said half of her wishes had been fulfilled after bidding farewell to her husband at the ceremony, the department said in a statement.
Photo: Lai Hsia-tung, Taipei Times
Takahashi’s widow said she had asked their children to scatter her own ashes at the same site after she dies, to keep a promise she made to her husband, the statement said.
Sato’s widow, who is also Taiwanese, said she and her husband had long lived in Japan before he passed away in February.
“He was so fond of Taiwan and he said many times he wanted to ‘visit every place around the country to appreciate the beauty of the island,’” his widow said.
After learning of the city government’s plan to hold a joint funeral ceremony at sea, she returned to Taiwan with her husband’s ashes last month to scatter them at sea, Sato’s widow said.
“I finally helped him realize his dream,” she said.
Department of Civil Affairs Director Ko Ching-chung (柯慶忠) said ceremonies that involve the scattering of ashes at sea sponsored by the city are free of charge and accessible to all families who lost a loved one regardless of their household registration or nationality, as long as they submit a permit for cremation.
From the time when New Taipei City was upgraded to a special municipality in December 2010 to last month, 12,384 people had received green burials sponsored by the city, up from 1,666 such burials conducted when the area was designated as Taipei County, Ko said.
Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) is aware that Beijing’s treatment of Hong Kong has weakened any possible sentiment for a “one country, two systems” arrangement for Taiwan, and has instructed Chinese Communist Party (CCP) politburo member Wang Huning (王滬寧) to develop new ways of defining cross-strait relations, Japanese news magazine Nikkei Asia reported on Thursday. A former professor of international politics at Fu Dan University, Wang is expected to develop a dialogue that could serve as the foundation for cross-strait unification, and Xi plans to use the framework to support a fourth term as president, Nikkei Asia quoted an anonymous source
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