Ceremony marks end of 1997 Peru hostage crisis

From a twitter post by the Peruvian Defense Ministry
The 25th anniversary ceremony was held in front of the replica of the Japanese ambassador’s official residence in Lima on Friday.

RIO DE JANEIRO (Jiji Press) — A ceremony was held in the Peruvian capital of Lima on Friday to mark the 25th anniversary of the end of a hostage crisis at the Japanese ambassador’s official residence in the South American country.

The Peruvian military hosted the event, held at a replica of the residence built for training on a raid to end the crisis.

The crisis began in December 1996, with Japanese expatriates and others taken hostage by members of the leftist guerrilla group Tupac Amaru Revolutionary Movement. It was ended by a Peruvian military operation on April 22, 1997.

The ceremony was joined by some of the then hostages and former Peruvian special forces members who took part in the operation, as well as Peruvian President Pedro Castillo and Japanese Ambassador to Peru Kazuyuki Katayama.

The event participants prayed for two special forces members and one Peruvian hostage who were killed during the operation.

Shigenori Sato, 73, one of the then hostages, said he had been unable to visit the replica residence for many years because of his memories of the incident.

“When I entered [the replica of] the room where we were locked in, I once again felt that it was a miracle that I survived,” he said.