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I totally agree with R. Gurumurthy (“Bad habit of judging foreigners,” April 10 letter) since I was living in Hong Kong at the time of the SARS epidemic, and Japanese expatriates were the first ones to flee town and the last ones to come back. The difference was that people in Hong Kong welcomed back the expatriates after SARS, because they realized that foreign managers and investors bring wealth and opportunities, while in Japan they seem to be tolerated at best.

I didn’t leave Japan in recent weeks because Japan is the place where I have decided to live, but I can understand that for expatriates who stay in Japan for a limited time, there is no point in taking unnecessary risks. I think the Japanese had better distinguish between the two groups and maybe grant semi-citizen rights to those who call Japan their home.

The opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are the writer’s own and do not necessarily reflect the policies of The Japan Times.

francesco formiconi

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