The Prime Minister Receives a Courtesy Call from Young Descendants of Former Inhabitants of the Northern Territories of Japan
Monday, August 6, 2012
Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda received a courtesy call at the Prime Minister's Office from junior-high students who are descendants, including third-generation descendants, of families who once lived in the Northern Territories of Japan.
After these seven students spoke about their feelings toward the Northern Territories, the Prime Minister gave words of encouragement, saying, "Welcome to the Prime Minister's Office from Hokkaido. I would like to give you a sincere welcome. I also thank you for telling me about your strong passion for the return of the Northern Territories to Japan, based on your experiences as the third- or fourth-generation descendants, or participating in exchange programs.
I reaffirmed my thinking that we, as the government, must strongly carry forward the negotiations with Russia for resolving the problem, so that our effort measures up to your wishes. In order to do so, the support of public opinions will be essential. I believe it is very important for people from the young generation like you to take the leading role in raising such public opinions.
I would once again like to encourage you to spread your thoughts that you expressed here today to people throughout the country."