Dear Friends of the World,
One month has passed since the Tohoku and Kanto Regions were hit by the Great Eastern Japan Earthquake and tsunami. The number of dead and missing is more than 27,000, making this the worst disaster for Japan since World War II.
People around the world have shown sympathy and concern and provided aid and support to Japan during this time of hardship, and I would like to extend my sincerest gratitude as an individual citizen of this country.
More than six hundred Osaka City officers, including firefighters, rescue teams, medical doctors, and public health nurses, have been working in the affected areas, and the City of Osaka personnel have also been stationed in Kamaishi City, Iwate Prefecture to serve as liaisons for Osaka’s relief effort.
While continuing aid efforts for the affected areas, we are also remembering the lessons learned from the Great Hanshin Awaji Earthquake in 1995 and stepping forward to help realize Japan’s full recovery. As the core of the second largest metropolitan area in Japan, Osaka must now take a leading role to re-energize the whole Japanese economy.
Given its distance from the areas affected, Osaka has suffered virtually no damage. Here in Osaka, and the rest of Western Japan, the living environment and business infrastructure, including water, electricity and transportation are safe, sound and fully functioning as usual.
The City of Osaka is moving forward to promote business, culture, entertainment, and tourism as ever before, and I urge you to also help Japan’s recovery by visiting Osaka, Kansai, and other unaffected regions. We hope that, with your help, we can act as a light for the affected regions, and reinvigorate Japan as a whole.
April 11, 2011