JSDF day 2020 Message

A Message of H.E. Mr. Maruyama Norio, Ambassador of Japan to the Republic of South Africa, for the 66th anniversary of Japan Self Defense Forces
With respect to the recent global outbreak of COVID-19, we are concerned over the further increase in confirmed cases and the geographic spread of infections.
I would like to express my deepest sympathy to those who have been affected by the disease. I also would like to express my sincere appreciation and great respect to all people who are fighting against the COVID-19 pandemic in their front line. 
This is under such circumstances that today, we humbly celebrate the 66th anniversary of Japan Self Defense Forces (JSDF). 
Looking back, when the Korean War broke out in 1950 there was a need for organizations to strengthen national safety and security, this led to the formation of the National Police Reserve. On the 1st of July 1954, this became the core of the establishment of the new JSDF. 
Over the years, through the Japan-USA alliance, the JSDF has contributed to regional and domestic peace, stability and disaster relief.
Through the implementation of the Japanese fundamental foreign policy of contributing to world peace and stability, the role of JSDF and the expectation of JSDF have been expanding.   
The peace and stability of the African continent is more and more important to Japan. The JSDF continues with its commitment to international peace-keeping operations through its ongoing personnel presence in South Sudan and its support of anti-piracy operations in the seas around Djibouti.
The JSDF has been co-operating with and contributing to the SANDF, especially through its contribution to the Peace Mission Training Centre at SANDF Training Command. We are also looking forward to future areas of collaboration with the SANDF especially in its involvement with SADC, conflicts on the continent and with the security of the international maritime environment.
The JSDF is now fully engaged in the response to COVID-19.
The Government of Japan is making concerted efforts with our people to take all possible measures to address the disease.
The JSDF has rendered assistance in fields such as medical care and transportation.
For your interest, I would like to share with you a copy of the material on the lessons learned and findings the Ministry of Defense/ JSDF gained through disease response measures towards the end of COVID-19.
It provides an overview of contributing factors to zero infection in the JSDF personnel during their operations on the Diamond Princess cruise ship, as well as the case analysis conducted at the JSDF Central Hospital. I hope you find the material useful.
I hope that the day we overcome the disease will come as soon as possible.
Please accept my best wishes for your good health and every success.
                                      MARUYAMA Norio
Ambassador of Japan to the Republic of South Africa