"The World and Japan" Database (Project Leader: TANAKA Akihiko)
Database of Japanese Politics and International Relations
National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies (GRIPS); Institute for Advanced Studies on Asia (IASA), The University of Tokyo

[Title] Message from Mr. Machimura Nobutaka, Foreign Minister of Japan, at the Commencement Ceremony of the Pilot Program for Human Resource Development in Asia for Peacebuilding

[Place] Hiroshima International Plaza, Higashihiroshima-shi
[Date] September 15, 2007
[Source] Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan
[Full text]

Ladies and gentlemen of the Class of 2007, the first-ever class of Hiroshima Peacebuilders Center,

Today I am very glad and proud to speak to you all, witnessing the official commencement of the HPC project.

People must walk a long and bumpy road from ceasefire to peace. Often times, a shaky balance could easily lead a war-torn society back into strife. Help from outside, in the broadest possible range of areas, is vital, first to ensure security and prevent humanitarian calamities, and also to build the nation step-by-step so that men and women, young and old, can enjoy the blessing of peace and aspire to a better life.

Hiroshima Peacebuilders Center was founded to mould professional peacebuilders. A long-standing symbol of war-time destruction and peace-time reconstruction, Hiroshima now takes pride afresh in hosting the center, that tirelessly gathers knowledge and experiences from the world, and in particular from Japan and the rest of Asia. It embodies the spirit of the Japanese nation that has spared no efforts to maintain peace.

I heartily congratulate you, from Japan and many other Asian countries, on being the members of the first class, and I celebrate your joining this noble project.

I sincerely hope that you will fly out of Hiroshima as world-class peacebuilders, stretching your wings to the four corners of the world. More and more people, Japanese as well as other Asians, shall follow in your footsteps, because you are the heralds of world peace. So once again, I extend my heartfelt welcome to you all.

(delivered by Director of International Peace Cooperation Division, MOFA)