I very much want for the younger generation, who will shoulder responsibility for Japan in the years to come, to assert their views confidently within the international community as truly internationally-minded individuals.
Today I met Ms. Tomitaku, the first place winner of the “High School Speech Contest on the Northern Territories,” and Mr. Savushkin, who achieved second place. I find it extremely promising that they considered the Northern Territories issue so earnestly and spoke about it in their own words.
Mr. Savushkin is a Russian national living in Japan. Active exchanges among the members of our younger generations will surely form the foundation of strong bonds of friendship with other nations into the future. I gave each of the two contest winners a piece of calligraphy to commemorate their achievements.
(Originally posted at 19:09, Monday, March 17, 2014 in Japanese)