On April 25, 2017, the Sugihara Group for Kaunas-Japan Relations Development was established. Soon to be approved by decree of the Mayor of Kaunas, the main purpose of the group is to bring together a wide range of organisations and Kaunas residents who together contribute towards positive relations between Kaunas and Japan.
Sugihara Memorial in Vilnius Photo © Ludo Segers @ The Lithuania Tribune

The group is made up of various individuals and organisations representing different interests and activities. The Deputy Mayor of Kaunas, Simonas Kairys, has been appointed as the group’s Chair. Members of the group include Member of the Lithuanian Parliament Arūnas Gelūnas, Chairman of the Board of the Sugihara Foundation ‘Diplomats for Life’ Arvydas Garbaravičius, Director of Center for Asian Studies of VMU Aurelijus Zykas as well as representatives from the tourist sector including hotels, restaurants, travel companies, Kaunas IN etc., from business including Cosy Homes Salon Manager Asta Kavaliauskaitė, the Hitachi representative in Lithuania Andrius Geležauskas, from culture including the Director of the M.K. Čiurlionis Museum Osvaldas Daugelis, the Manager of the Aura Dance Theatre Birutė Letukaitė and the head of the Varpelis choir Ksaveras Plančiūnas, alongside others representing education and related businesses.

The group’s first major project will be Sugihara Week, a large event during the first week of September 2017 involving artists from Lithuania, Japan and Israel who will meet in Kaunas to work together, share experiences and present a wide range of concerts, exhibitions, lectures and workshops in venues and spaces around the city. A special event for academics will also take place in which various themes relating to interwar Kaunas will be debated and discussed. Together with the main theme of Chiune Sugihara and his humanitarian work in Kaunas during the summer of 1940, other subjects addressed include discourses on humanism and tolerance and various aspects of Japanese culture. The group cordially invites individuals and organisations representing Lithuanian, Japanese and Jewish culture to join us for the festival.

More information about Sugihara Week

Translated by Richard Schofield

Lukiskes prison in Vilnius gears up for popular Netflix's series

The 4th season of the Netflix drama Stranger Things will be shot in Vilnius , with preparations...

Lukiškės Prison: bringing the past into the future

The prison complex in Lukiškės has always been a multifunctional space. At the time of its...

Lithuanian actor and director Sabulis dies

Lithuanian theater and movie actor Remigijus Sabulis has died at the age of 65, his colleague...

Gaon and Gimbutiene anniversaries put on UNESCO list

The anniversaries of two people from Lithuania have been put on the UNESCO list of anniversaries for...

Lutheran church rebuilding project will be granted special status in Klaipeda

The project aimed at rebuilding St John's Church with its tower in the Lithuanian coastal city of...