Prime Minister Abe hosted an "Iftar" (fast-breaking dinner during the Holy Month of Ramadan)
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe hosted an "Iftar" (fast-breaking dinner during the Holy Month of Ramadan) for the ambassadors of Islamic nations and other officials at the Prime Minister's Office on July 31. 34 representatives from the Islamic Diplomatic Corps in Tokyo participated in the Iftar and provided their local cuisines. Mr. Fumio Kishida, Minister for Foreign Affairs, also participated in the Iftar.
Prime Minister Abe stated in his welcome remarks that Japan and the Muslim community have common culture which attaches importance to living together with others in the spirit of tolerance, and that he reaffirmed the unbroken bond between Japan and Islamic countries that has been nurtured over a long period of time, through his visits to Islamic countries in the Middle East and Southeast Asia since he came to power at the end of last year. Prime Minister Abe admired the first-ever Sumo wrestler from the Islamic world Osunaarashi in attendance saying that he has attained more wins than losses at the last Grand Sumo Tournament while fasting during the month of Ramadan, and that he is precisely a bridge between Japan and the Muslim community. Prime Minister Abe concluded his remarks by expressing his sincere hope that the Iftar would contribute to further enhancing relations of friendship and cooperation between Japan and the Islamic world.
Speaking as Dean of the Diplomatic Corp of Islamic countries in Japan, H.E. Mr. Sid Ali Ketrandji, Ambassador of the People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria to Japan, said that the Iftar hosted by Prime Minister has now become a well established tradition of great signification and it translates the spirit of tolerance and cooperation that nurtures the relationship between Japan and Muslim countries. He expressed his gratitude for Prime Minister Abe’s efforts towards reinforcing and broadening of cooperation between Japan and Muslim countries.
After that, Mr. Natsuo Yamaguchi, Chief Representative of the New Komeito Party, gave an address, followed by a toast proposed by Mr. Yoshiro Mori, former Prime Minister.