Chiune (Sempo) Sugihara (January 1, 1900-1986) was the first Japanese diplomat posted to Lithuania. In the summer of 1940, Jewish refugees from occupied Poland came to him with bogus visas for Curacao and other Dutch possessions in America. Sugihara decided to facilitate their escape from war-torn Europe. He granted 10-day visas for transit through Japan to hundreds of refugees who held these Curacao destination visas. Before his consulate closed in the fall of 1940, Sugihara even gave visas to refugees who lacked all travel papers.
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