Remarks in November 2007
Mr. Shigenobu Kato, Ambassador of Japan, delivered a speech at the coaching session for Japan-Jordan friendship football event on 18 November 2007
Your Excellency, Mr. Nasser Shraideh, Secretary General, Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation
Mr. Sheldon Pitterman, Director, UNRWA Operation in Jordan
Mr. Tsusyoshi Kitazawa, JICA Official Supporter
Mr. Takeaki Sato, Resident Representative, JICA Jordan
Ladies and Gentlemen,
It is indeed a great honour and pleasure for me to be with you today for Japan-Jordan Friendship Football Event.
First, I wish to take this opportunity to commend Mr. Kitazawa’s efforts and his contribution as JICA’s official supporter to Japanese assistance scheme to Jordan.
Japan’s assistance to the Palestinian people through UNRWA, which began in 1953, has amounted to more than Five Hundred and Thirty million US Dollars ($ 530,000,000) including Food Aid since 1970 and a large number of Technical Cooperation through hands of experts and volunteers in JICA. Despite Japanese and other donors’ efforts, we are disappointed to say that the Palestinian problem isn’t resolved yet.
Though we may spend much time to achieve the peace in the Middle East area, Japan will continue its humanitarian assistance to mitigate the difficulties of Palestinian refugees in various ways.
Mr. Kitazawa’s contribution for the Palestinian children living in the refugee camps is one of our devotions to achieve sustainable peace in the Middle East. Since he became JICA’s official supporter in 2004, he has been constantly for giving hopes and dreams to children in Palestinian refugees’ camps in 2004 and 2006 in both Syria and Palestine.
As most participants here today know, Japan, Jordan, Israel and Palestine have launched together Four Party Consultative Unit on the “Corridor for Peace and Prosperity” and we are all cooperating to develop the Palestinian economy. We, Japan, Jordan, Israel and Palestine, are fully determined to reach the concrete outcome of our further efforts.
On our way to acquire the goal, which is peace and prosperity, we certainly have to bring up children who can share our vision for the future.
Playing football is one of the most popular sports for children in the world. Through football, children will build up a firm friendship and enjoy it together in order to reach the goal, not only in the football team, but also as members in their society.
Today, I would like to learn how to enjoy football with children, and am looking forward to further strengthen cooperation between Japan and Jordan and to improve issues in Palestinian refugees’ camps.
Last but not least, I would like to express my deep appreciation to the staff of UNRWA, Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation, JICA and Mr. Kitazawa’s colleagues for implementing today’s event.
Let us continue building the bonds of friendship and goodwill through cooperation and mutual respect for each other.
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