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Chile to present Moai statue to quake-hit Miyagi city

RIO DE JANEIRO, Aug. 21 — The Chilean government is planning to send a stone replica of a Moai human figure on Easter Island created by Chilean artisans as a gift to a Miyagi Prefecture city.

The city was hit particularly hard by last year's major earthquake and tsunami.

The Chileans say they aim to present the Moai, the first statue made with the island's stone to be given to a foreign country, in a gesture of gratitude for all the support Japan has extended to restore the Moai, exposed to the elements for many centuries.

Back in 1991, Chile gave a Moai statue to the city of Minamisanriku to promote friendship between the two countries. The statue was offered specifically to the city because it was affected by a tsunami that a powerful 1960 temblor in Chile triggered. (PNA/Kyodo)

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