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17 March 2006
Food Aid through the World Food Programme (WFP)
The Government of Japan has decided to extend food aid totaling 1.385 billion yen (approximately US$12.9 million) through the World Food Programme (WFP) to countries and regions which have an influence on regional peace and stability, or countries in need of food being in a fragile transitional stage. Notes to this effect were exchanged on March 17 (Fri) in Rome between Mr. Yuji Nakamura, Japanese Ambassador to Italy, and Mr. James Morris, Executive Director of the WFP.
The breakdown of this assistance is as follows:
(6) Palestinian Administrated Areas (non-refugee residents)
(160 million yen)
On the visit of President Mahmoud Abbas of the Palestinian Authority to Japan in May 2005, Japan informed him of its policy to give all possible support to his peace efforts, and announced its intention to provide approximately 100 million dollars for the immediate future. The food aid decided today is part of the assistance package. As a result of the Election for the Palestinian Legislative Council held on January 25, 2006, Hamas gained a majority and became the leading party. While Japan is paying close attention to see if the new Palestinian Authority to be formed will make efforts for promoting the peace process, Japan has decided to provide this humanitarian assistance from the viewpoint of preventing further deterioration of Palestinians' living condition and thus of strengthening peace-oriented public opinion. WFP will distribute wheat flour to non-refugee Palestinians in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, targeting socially vulnerable including orphans, aged people, undernourished children and others.