TOKYO (courtesy of Kyodo News) − Veteran journalist Fumio Matsuo, a former Kyodo News correspondent, received the 2017 Japan National Press Club Award on Monday for his efforts in calling on U.S. and Japanese leaders to pay respective visits to Hiroshima and Pearl Harbor in symbolic acts of postwar reconciliation.
The Japan National Press Club said his work on Japan-U.S. relations helped lead to such landmark visits by former U.S. President Barack Obama and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, milestones in the two countries’ postwar history.
In May 2016, Obama visited the atomic-bombed city of Hiroshima, becoming the first American head of state to do so, while in December of that year Abe visited Pearl Harbor in Hawaii, site of the attack by Japan in 1941 that brought the United States into World War II.
“As for the theme of reconciliation in East Asia, I would like to do my best … as I think it is the responsibility of our generation,” the 83 yearold journalist said at the award ceremony in Tokyo.
After joining Kyodo News in 1956, Matsuo served as bureau chief at the Washington bureau in the 1980s and as president of Kyodo News Markets Co. later. In 2002 at the age of 68, he came out of retirement and returned to journalism.
The award, founded in 1972, is designed to honor those who have contributed to the credibility and authority of journalism, according to the press club established in 1969.
In addition, Asia Media, via the courtesy of Ms Jackie Lee of Pacific Century Institute, is happy to pass along the report that Mr Matsuo is to sign a contract with a Korean publishing company to publish in Korean his new book titled “America and China”. This important work was originally published in Japanese a few months ago.