World news story
Britain remembers March 11 on fifth anniversary
The UK today remembers those affected by the events of 11 March 2011 on the fifth anniversary of the Great East Japan Earthquake.
The British Ambassador to Japan, Mr Tim Hitchens, is attending a national memorial service in Tokyo, while the British Embassy Tokyo and Consulate-General in Osaka will observe a one minute silence at 14:46 and flags are being flown at half-mast in remembrance of those who lost their lives, their loved ones and their homes.
Ambassador Hitchens said:
Five years on from 11 March 2011, memories from that day continue to shape conversations with those I meet, from government policymakers to local businesses and communities striving to rebuild and plant the seeds of prosperity for Japan’s future.
It was fitting that last year, during his first visit to Japan, His Royal Highness The Duke of Cambridge was able to pay his personal respects, meet affected families and bring renewed attention to the ongoing need for support for recovery.
With support from groups such as The British Chamber of Commerce in Japan, local initiatives and grants for simple essentials are playing an important role in helping small businesses get back on their feet. Today we honour not only the many victims of the Tohoku earthquake and tsunami, but those continuing to keep their memory alive by so selflessly supporting the rebuilding of communities and livelihoods.
In his statement made after the Great East Japan Earthquake, Prime Minister David Cameron said:
We stood by Japan in the immediate aftermath of the earthquake and we continue to stand by the Japanese people and Government as they continue to reconstruct the Tohoku region.
Our relationship is founded on much more than just co-operation in the face of adversity. I hope we can continue to build on our strong commercial partnership, and our shared commitment to democracy, human rights, aid and trade.