Tokyo holds funerals of 2 Japanese victims
Funerals were held in Tokyo on Friday for Hiroshi Tanaka, 80, and Koyo Ogasawara, 56, two of the seven Japanese victims of last weekend's terrorist attack on a Gulshan café in Dhaka.
During Tanaka's funeral, attended by some 500 people, his younger brother said in a speech that he cannot accept his brother's sudden and unreasonable death, according to a participant.
The younger brother called on participants to work to create a peaceful world, as Tanaka did. A message from Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was also read out during the funeral.
“He was a very humble person and had a strong will to work for the good of the world,” said Toshiko Kitahara, a 47-year-old friend of Tanaka who is also engaged in overseas aid activities. “I wanted to hear more job stories from him.”
Among some 200 participants in Ogasawara's funeral was Japan International Cooperation Agency President Shinichi Kitaoka. The seven victims were working on a JICA project in Bangladesh.
“I was asked by the bereaved family to make the project a success, without fail,” Kitaoka told reporters. “We will continue the work while raising the security level.”
A 41-year-old construction consultant who has worked with Ogasawara overseas described him as a giving person. “I was advised on my job and private life. I'm so sad,” he said.
Toshiaki Okada, 54, who shared time with Ogasawara in a college boat club, said he was a gentle and kind senior member. “He was dedicated to working for Bangladesh. It's so regrettable,” Okada said.
On Thursday night, a wake for another victim, Yuko Sakai, 42, was held in her hometown of Hamamatsu, Shizuoka Prefecture.
A photo displayed at the venue showed Sakai in a gorgeous dress with an exotic scarf. And in her coffin, her face was covered with a photo of her smiling face, according to Kiyoshi Fujii, 68, a regular customer of a cafe run by her mother.
“I was so shocked that I went completely blank,” Fujii said. “It's really cruel.”
Kitaoka also attended Sakai's wake.
“She was a colleague of us on the frontline of international aid. We are simply sad to lose the colleague,” he said.
In Tokyo on Friday, a Japanese investigative source said that five of the seven Japanese victims of the attack had gunshot wounds to their heads, which were likely fatal.
On their bodies, gunshot wounds and cuts were also found in places other than the head, the sources said.
The Japanese victims are believed to have been slain by militants before Bangladeshi troops entered the Holey Artisan Bakery restaurant to end an 11-hour siege.
Japanese police, who also examined the bodies of the two other victims, plan to ask Bangladeshi authorities through Interpol to provide autopsy data.
Police also plan to interview the only Japanese survivor, Tamaoki Watanabe, 46, who is still in hospital.