NAGOYA – The city of Nanjing canceled a plan to send Chinese volleyball players to Nagoya in August under their annual sports exchange agreement because of Nagoya Mayor Takashi Kawamura’s denials about the 1937 Nanjing Massacre, Nagoya officials said Monday.
Nanjing communicated the decision to its sister city by phone last Wednesday, the officials said. It originally intended to send around 20 junior high school players and their coach.
Nanjing told the Nagoya Municipal Government that the dispatch was called off “because it has suspended exchanges” since February, when the mayor publicly questioned the veracity of the bloody massacre, in which tens to hundreds of thousands of people were raped and murdered.
The annual sports exchange program began six years after the two cities established sister-city ties in 1978. The program is limited to junior high school students, who were to engage in joint training and volleyball matches.
Earlier, Nanjing canceled a cultural event for March that was to feature a performance in China by Nagoya-based pop group SKE48.