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Taiwan to mark 3rd anniversary of Japan quake

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- A series of movie screenings and memorial events will take place in Taiwan to commemorate the third anniversary of the devastating March 11, 2011 Tohoku earthquake and ensuing tsunami in Japan.

Among the events will be screenings of two Japanese films at the Taipei Office of Japan's Interchange Association March 9 and March 11.

The event is designed to express gratitude to Taiwan for its post-disaster assistance and support in the wake of the disaster, said the office, which represents Japan's interests in Taiwan in the absence of diplomatic ties.

The showings include a 100-minute documentary titled “Fukushima Hula Girls,” which features the rebuilding process in Fukushima Prefecture, one of the hardest hit areas, the association said.

Another is a 118-minute movie titled “Quartet,” which focuses on family bonds and records scenes of the disaster three years ago, it added.

Meanwhile, the association is helping to organize a memorial event slated for March 11 at a Taipei hotel.

The event, which is being organized by a group of Japanese nationals living in Taiwan, will commemorate those who died in the massive quake and ensuing tsunami and extend thanks to Taiwan for its post disaster assistance.

A moment of silence will be observed in memory of those who died and there will also be music and dance performances, according to the organizers.

Later in the evening, candlelit memorial services will be held simultaneously in Taiwan and Japan. The services will take place at the Chung Shan Creative Hub in Taipei and at a venue in Japan's Fukushima Prefecture, organizers of the events said. Those attending will be able to light candles as a message of blessing to Japan.

The 9.0 magnitude earthquake and subsequent tsunami killed nearly 20,000 people, mainly in Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures in northeastern Japan.

In the wake of the disaster, Taiwan donated about 20 billion Japanese yen (US$195 million) in aid, more than any other single country.

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