ISTANBUL – A park commemorating a Japanese aid worker who died there while helping Turkish victims of a major earthquake in 2011 opened Saturday in the suburbs of Istanbul.
Atsushi Miyazaki, who was a member of the nonprofit Association for Aid and Relief, Japan, was in Turkey in November 2011 to support relief activities after a 7.1-magnitude earthquake struck eastern Turkey on Oct. 23 that year.
He died after the hotel he was staying at collapsed during an aftershock on Nov. 10. He was 41.
“Mr. Miyazaki is a hero who lost his life while working on humanitarian activities, and he became a son of Turkey. May he rest in peace,” said the mayor of Sariyer at the opening ceremony for Atsushi Miyazaki Park.
At the ceremony, a bust of Miyazaki was also unveiled.
Keiji Fukuda, consul general of the Japanese Consulate in Istanbul, said that he was “confident that the park will become a new foundation to promote friendship between the two countries.”
Miyazaki’s death has been widely reported many times in Turkey, and his name has been attached to several facilities in his honor.
Another AAR Japan staffer, Miyuki Konnai, who was staying in the same hotel, was rescued and survived the aftershock.