Canadian Conference on
Preventing Crimes Against Humanity:
Lessons from the Asia Pacific War (1931-1945)

March 21-22, 2003 University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada

Opening Statement: War on Iraq is a crime against peace

Closing Statement: Integrating the movement for historical redress and reconciliation with the anti-war movement in Canada and abroad

Conference Update:

  • Photo Exhibition on Unit 731 & "Comfort Women"- March 17 & 19, 2003 at International House
  • Documentary Screenings
    Open to the Public and Free Admission
  • Student Subsidy Available
  • Opening Ceremony
  • University of Victoria Symposium
    March 20th, 2003

    Featured Speakers:


  • Kinuko Laskey, A-Bomb survivor
  • Mr. XU Jiaxie, from China, survivor of "Unit 731"
  • Grandma HWANG Geum Joo, from Korea, former "Comfort Woman"    
  • Grandma AHN Jeom Soon, from Korea, former "Comfort Woman"
    (Unfortunately, on March 11, 2003, while she was walking down the stairs at home, Grandma AHN slipped and injured her back. She will not be able to come to testify at the conference as planned. We are grateful that Granda HWANG Geum Joo agrees to come at such short notice.)


  • Arai Shin-ichi
  • Iris Chang, author of The Rape of Nanking
  • Roland Chrisjohn, author of The Circle Game
  • Stephen Endicott , author of The United States and Biological Warfare: Secrets of the
    Early Cold War and Korea
  • SUH Sung, former prisoner of conscience
  • Indai Lourdes Sajor, co-convener, Women's International War Crimes Tribunal
  • Michael J. Franzblau, Medical Ethics Activist and Clinical Professor of Dermatology
  • Martin Furmanski, Pathologist and Medical Historian
  • Maryka Omatsu, author of Bittersweet Passage: Redress and the Japanese Canadian
  • Erna Paris, author of Long Shadows
  • Wang Xuan, Biological Warfare Victims' Representative

  • Conference Abstract

    Seventy years ago, the drums of war were beating. In Asia, racism, sexism, militarism and imperialism ignited a lethal conflict, precipitating terrible crimes against humanity. Have we learned the lessons from that war?

    This two day conference will offer an opportunity to learn from the Asia Pacific War (1931-1945) in order to eliminate racism, prevent crimes against humanity, and stop war. It will also look at how we approach tough issues such as redress and reconciliation. The conference will be interactive, allowing participants to learn about the past, and to apply the lessons to the present.

    Workshops will include participatory sessions related to the war (biological warfare, the "comfort women," the Rape of Nanking, Hiroshima, Internment of Japanese Canadians) and to the present (residential schools, violence against women, the "war on terrorism," racial profiling).

    Join us in the quest for justice and equality on the 40th Anniversary of the United Nations Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination.

    The Conference Needs Your Support!
    Your organization can be listed as an endorsing organization and help promote the conference. You and your friends can help out as volunteers [doc, pdf] Any financial support is most appreciated. All donations are tax deductible. Each pledge will go toward defraying the cost of bringing together a diverse cast of survivors of the Asia Pacific War, overseas scholars and human rights advocates and help making the Conference accessible to all. Please make your donation cheque / money order payable to "UBC" Memo: "Donation for APL Conference @ International House" and mail it to the address below.

    Contact Information

    Asia Pacific Lessons Conference
    c/o International House
    1783 West Mall, Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z2
    Tel: 604-822-4904
    Fax: 604-822-5099