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Johnson Smith Confident Japan Can Deliver Safe And Enjoyable Olympics

Published:Saturday | February 27, 2021 | 4:20 PMJamaica Information Service
Senator Kamina Johnson Smith, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade.

Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator Kamina Johnson Smith, says she is confident in Japan’s capacity to deliver the Olympic and Paralympic Games this summer in a safe, enjoyable and rewarding manner.

“We are assured that your effective management of the pandemic in the weeks leading up to these highly anticipated games will set the tone to welcome athletes from around the world to compete in a novel and extraordinary atmosphere,” she said.

The minister noted Japan’s commitment to the Games with the appointment of a new minister and a new president of the Tokyo Olympic Games.

“This will truly be a symbol of our ability as a global community to embrace life beyond the coronavirus,” she said.

The minister was speaking at a reception held at the St. Andrew residence of the Ambassador of Japan to Jamaica on Tuesday to celebrate the 61st birthday of His Majesty Emperor Naruhito of Japan, who ascended to the throne in May 2019 as the country’s 126th Emperor.

Japan's ambassador to Jamaica, Masaya Fujiwara, was in attendance.

Scores of persons joined the reception online due to restrictions on large gatherings in order to contain the spread of COVID-19.

Strong bilateral ties

Meanwhile, Johnson Smith expressed appreciation for the strong support to the island from Japan, as Jamaica works to improve the capacity of its health sector and its emerge from the pandemic.

She noted, further, that technical exchange programmes organised through the Japan International Cooperation Agency (IICA), such as the Japan Overseas Cooperation Volunteers (JOCV) and Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET), have helped to enhance cooperation between the two countries.

“These are all excellent examples of the calibre of technical collaboration, cultural exchanges and people-to-people contact that serve to enrich this active partnership,” she said.

Johnson Smith noted that the anniversary was not only an occasion to celebrate with the people of Japan, but also an opportunity to pay tribute to the long-standing relations between the countries.

“This partnership has stood the test of time for over five decades and has grown in depth and stature, characterised by a fruitful friendship and extensive cooperation,” she noted.

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