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Top What's up around the Prime Minister March, 2004
What's up around the Prime Minister

Prime Minister Delivers Address at the National Defense Academy Graduation Ceremony

Sunday, March 21, 2004

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Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi attended the graduation ceremony at the National Defense Academy located in Yokosuka City, Kanagawa Prefecture, and delivered an address in front of this year's 439 graduates.

In his address, Prime Minister Koizumi said, "Japan is now in a position to actively contribute for international peace and prosperity. In Iraq, the Ground, Maritime and Air Self-Defense Forces (SDF) of Japan are working hard with sweat dripping down their foreheads on humanitarian and reconstruction assistance for the Iraqi people," and emphasized the significance of the dispatch of the SDF as a form of international contribution.

Furthermore, Prime Minister Koizumi introduced a letter from Colonel Masahisa Sato, the leader of the Ground Self-Defense Force working in Samawah in southern Iraq, in which "As a representative and executer of good will of the people of Japan, I bear firmly in mind to make efforts to my fullest extent," was written and said, "I hope all of you will aim to realize a Self-Defense Force that works with and for the people of Japan and one which contributes to the peace and safety of the international community."