Although it has been out of the headlines for the past several days, the situation in northern Japan is still grave, and much international aid will be required over a long period of time to stabilize the region. The IDF is doing its share, having set up a medical clinic in the city of Minami-Sanriko that has, since it was set up last week, already treated hundreds of people.
On a visit to the clinic Monday, Deputy Japanese Foreign Minister Makiko Kikuta toured the facility. In a visit that was given wide coverage in the Japanese media, Kikuta told IDF officials that “your excellent work here, which was impossible to ignore in media reports throughout Japan, is very much appreciated by us and the Japanese people. Your success and the cooperation that you have been able to establish with local medical officials will create an opening for additional delegations in the future. I was very impressed by the medical staff. Israelis have strong character and I was impressed by the orderly way that you operate.”
Kikuta praised the Israeli medical team for being the first to offer aid to the Japanese people and promised to tell other Japanese government officials about what she saw during the visit.
Although the IDF soldiers on staff are there to work – and are often dealing with matters of life and death – they still have found the opportunity to connect with local residents. In the video below, IDF soldiers are seen undertaking a series of activities with local youth.