The Friendship Tower in Bagac, Bataan was erected by the RisshÅ KÅsei Kai, a Japanese Buddhist lay organization, as a sign of friendship and peace between the Philippines and Japan. The tower was inaugurated on April 8, 1975 on the day the Japanese celebrate the birth of Buddha. This day is coincidentally the eve of the Philippine Day of Valor (Araw ng Kagitingan) which commemorates the fall of Bataan to the Empire of Japan and the Bataan Death March during the Second World War.
Photo from the RisshÅ KÅsei Kai website.
From the website of RisshÅ KÅsei Kai we learn the history of the Friendship Tower. It happened that in the early 70s, a group of young Japanese people visited the Philippines after the World Conference on Religion and Peace. They were invited to visit Bataan and there they got to see the memorials marking the places where the Bataan Death March started (one in Bagac and the other in Mariveles). It was then that the idea to create a monument for peace and friendship between the two nations was conceived and the Friendship Tower was the result.
The tower stands at a T-junction in the town proper of Bagac. It consists of three 27-meter high pillars connected together by rings, like a circular version of the Quezon Memorial. At the bottom of the structure hangs a peace bell that was struck twice in the inauguration ceremony, once each by the head of the youth division of RisshÅ KÅsei Kai and the mayor of Bagac.
More pictures and details from the WaypointsDotPH website.