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A Message to Our Friends Regarding the Recent Earthquake and Tsunami

In this brief message, I would like to inform our readers about conditions in Japan since the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami which struck this country on March 11. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for their warm messages and offers of support in the wake of this tragedy. All of us at the JCMT were deeply moved by the heartfelt sympathy and concern expressed by so many of our former Fellows and friends.

Although it has now been 2 months since the terrible disaster, the victims of the tsunami and residents of towns and villages near the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant are still forced to lead constrained lives in refuge centers. On the other hand, full-scale support by the government and volunteers is now underway, and restoration of lifeline infrastructure is progressing smoothly. The Tohoku Shinkansen superexpress train is also back in service over the full length of the line.

The cleanup and final disposition of the Fukushima power plant will require the efforts of all concerned over an extended period of several years, but efforts to achieve a cold shutdown seem to be progressing steadily. In Japan as a whole, beginning with Tokyo, there is now a rising trend toward revival, and the economy, which had been temporarily impacted by the earthquake, is also continuing to recover.

Considering this, the JCMT plans to hold its 2011 Spring Session as scheduled, with no change for other years. We are currently preparing to receive the doctors who will come to Japan this year for training, and we are making every possible effort to ensure that there will be no problems or inconvenience to any of you.

In closing, I wish to express my thanks to all our former Fellows and other friends and colleagues for their deeply-felt concern about the condition of the recovery in Japan. I would also like to assure you that the activities of the JCMT will remain unchanged, and I request your continuing support and encouragement as we go forward together.

June 26, 2011
Yutaka Baba,
Secretary General, JCMT