Japan Renews Resolve for Disaster Reconstruction (News)
Tokyo, March 11 (Jiji Press)—With silent prayers and a renewed determination to speed up disaster reconstruction, Japan marked the seventh anniversary of the March 11, 2011, earthquake and tsunami, which left about 18,000 people dead or missing and touched off the nation's worst-ever nuclear crisis.
The Japanese government held a memorial ceremony at the National Theatre in Tokyo, which was attended by Prince Akishino and his wife, Princess Kiko, the heads of the three branches of government and other people, including representatives of the families of disaster victims in the three hardest-hit prefectures of Iwate, Miyagi, and Fukushima.
At 2:46 PM, when a 9.0-magnitude earthquake struck off Japan's northeastern coast seven year ago, participants offered a minute of silence in honor of the victims.
"Seven years have passed and reconstruction has made steady headway in disaster areas," Prime Minister Abe Shinzō said in an address, noting progress in infrastructure and housing construction.
Calling attention to more than 70,000 people who are still evacuated, Abe highlighted his government's policy of doing all it can to accelerate disaster reconstruction. "We'll provide seamless support in line with the stages of livelihood reconstruction," he said.[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]