Remarks After Signing the Book of Condolences

Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
Japanese Ambassador to the United States Ichiro Fujisaki
Embassy of Japan
Washington, DC
March 22, 2011

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, it is with a very heavy heart that I come to pay my respects to the people of Japan who have endured so much in the last weeks. This has been an unprecedented disaster, but it has provoked an unprecedented show of resilience by the Japanese people and a pledge of cooperation and friendship from the American people. We will be with Japan and the people of Japan as you recover and rebuild, and we will stand with you in the months and years ahead.

And I can only express my very deep sympathy to all who have lost family members, loved ones, friends and colleagues, and can only hope that the extraordinary spirit of the Japanese people will be evidenced in every way possible to bring comfort and support to those in need. And we will be there to support you at this time. Thank you.

AMBASSADOR FUJISAKI: And Madam Secretary, just one word. Your rescue team, your forces, and your government officials have been working day and night with us, and your people, your NGOs – Red Cross and companies – extending their support to us. And this means a lot to the Japanese people, encouragement to us in such a difficult time, and as you have said, to be standing with us in this very difficult moment, we really do appreciate your friendship and solidarity, and we will never forget it. Thank you very much.

SECRETARY CLINTON: Ambassador, it’s our honor to stand with Japan. Japan’s generosity to people around the world is so well known. In the midst of disasters large and small, we see the assistance that comes from the government and people of Japan. And there has been an outpouring of support now in your time of need, and it is a great symbol of our friendship, partnership, and alliance that the United States is with you and will be there. Once we get through the immediate repercussions of this double disaster, we will continue to work with you. And we have no doubt that Japan will demonstrate a great commitment to an even better future.

AMBASSADOR FUJISAKI: Yes. We will overcome this and we will come back stronger, but thank you very much for standing with us.

SECRETARY CLINTON: Thank you so much.

AMBASSADOR FUJISAKI: Thank you very much.

SECRETARY CLINTON: Thank you, Ambassador.

PRN: 2011/440