Embassy of Japan celebrates birthday anniversary of Emperor Naruhito

Published February 23, 2024
Japanese students perform on the drumbeat at a reception held in connection with the birth anniversery of Japanese Emporer Naruhito on Thursday. — Photo by Tanveer Shahzad
Japanese students perform on the drumbeat at a reception held in connection with the birth anniversery of Japanese Emporer Naruhito on Thursday. — Photo by Tanveer Shahzad

ISLAMABAD: The embassy of Japan on Thursday celebrated the 64th birthday anniversary of the Emperor Naruhito, which is one of its most cherished and vibrant annual celebrations.

The official event was a spectacular display of patriotism with a special and spectacular drum performance by children from Japanese School in addition to traditional ikebana and bonsai displays by groups from Lahore, Japanese companies and Jica joining to display their products and projects.

Japanese Ambassador Wada Mitsuhiro, who hosted the reception, welcomed Jamal Shah, the caretaker Minister for National Heritage and Culture, besides other ministers, parliamentarians, senior government officials, members of the diplomatic community and other dignitaries from public and private sectors.

Ambassador Wada together with guests cut a cake to mark the emperor’s birthday, which is on February 23. Guests extended congratulations to the host and friends from the embassy.

Ambassador hails longstanding friendly relations between his country and Pakistan

Since his accession to the throne on May 1, 2019, as the 126th emperor of Japan, Emperor Naruhito has stood as the symbol of Japan and the unity of the people. The emperor and the imperial family also facilitated the good relations with foreign countries, including Pakistan.

Welcoming the guests, Ambassador Wada conveyed his appreciation for the longstanding friendly relations between Japan and Pakistan and appreciated contributions of all the people who had helped further strengthen mutual ties in individual, business or official capacity.

“Imagine, what do the Japanese living in Pakistan do here? Among around 1,000 of us living in Pakistan, in fact quite many were married to Pakistanis or the children of such international couples. They formed families who loved both Japan and Pakistan, and many of such families had made good contributions to Pak-Japan relations.”

The ambassador said the embassy, Jica, JETRO and Japanese companies had been present in Pakistan for long. This year marked 70 years since Japan started its official development assistance (ODA) to Pakistan. “This is a long time, and I would like to emphasise that we have never been alone – we’ve always had Pakistani friends and partners who supported us. I’m not talking only about big partner companies, but also about each of you, who kept telling us that you liked Japanese culture, anime, food, cars and electronics. It is thanks to you that we have been able to continue our work here in Pakistan.”

He said there were also partnerships that were not so visible. “When I visited Sialkot a few months ago, I was surprised and pleased to know that the famous Pakistani businesses that produce soccer balls and surgical instruments are using high-quality Japan-made materials. Both soccer balls and surgical instruments are among the specialties of Pakistan and they are exported to countries around world,” he said, adding as ambassador it was pleasing that Japanese companies and technology played a vital and indispensable role in promoting Pakistan’s export.

He said there was still political and economic turmoil in this country. “Nevertheless, I am convinced that the power and contribution of each individual will continue to be the basis of our strong ties. Two weeks ago, I had the honour to observe the elections at some polling stations, and was truly impressed by the passion of the people who worked there all day to make people’s voices heard. The people of Pakistan are the treasure of this country and also the Japan-Pakistan relationship,” he said.

Published in Dawn, February 23rd, 2024

Opinion

Editorial

X post facto
Updated 19 Apr, 2024

X post facto

Our decision-makers should realise the harm they are causing.
Insufficient inquiry
19 Apr, 2024

Insufficient inquiry

UNLESS the state is honest about the mistakes its functionaries have made, we will be doomed to repeat our follies....
Melting glaciers
19 Apr, 2024

Melting glaciers

AFTER several rain-related deaths in KP in recent days, the Provincial Disaster Management Authority has sprung into...
IMF’s projections
Updated 18 Apr, 2024

IMF’s projections

The problems are well-known and the country is aware of what is needed to stabilise the economy; the challenge is follow-through and implementation.
Hepatitis crisis
18 Apr, 2024

Hepatitis crisis

THE sheer scale of the crisis is staggering. A new WHO report flags Pakistan as the country with the highest number...
Never-ending suffering
18 Apr, 2024

Never-ending suffering

OVER the weekend, the world witnessed an intense spectacle when Iran launched its drone-and-missile barrage against...