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Speeches and Statements by Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi

Ministry of Foreign Affairs Press Release

December 15, 2003

At 00:00 hours on December 15, 2003 Mr. Junichiro Koizumi, Prime Minister of Japan made the following comments:

"The capture of former President Saddam Hussein is a great step forward for the improvement of security and reconstruction in Iraq and I welcome this. I strongly hope that as a result of this capture the Iraqi people will get further united in their efforts to establish free and democratic Iraq.

Japan will provide as much assistance as possible for the establishment of a government for the Iraqi people by the Iraqi people themselves and for the reconstruction of Iraq, and will make further diplomatic efforts at more effective international cooperation."