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SVG’s PM gets Japan’s highest award

May 1, 2024

KINGSTOWN, St. Vincent, CMC – St. Vincent and the Grenadines’ Prime Minister Dr. Ralph Gonsalves has been awarded Japan’s Grand Cordon of the Order of the Rising Sun.

The award is the Premier Decoration under the Order of the Rising Sun and is one of the highest national decorations awarded to foreign nationals in recognition of their accomplished work in advancing relations between Japan and other countries.

“The Prime Minister thanks the Government of Japan for its kind consideration and accepted the national decoration with humility in the quest for the further strengthening of the already excellent relations between Japan and St. Vincent and the Grenadines,” according to a statement issued by the Office of the Prime Minister.

The statement quoted Japan’s ambassador to Trinidad and Tobago, Matsubara Yukata, as saying in an April 29 letter that Tokyo conferring a national decoration upon a sitting head of government “is a very rare occurrence, and it is this rarity that befits a leader of your stature”.

Matsubara said that having met Gonsalves on a number of occasions, “I can honestly say that I hold you in the highest regard, both as a leader and statesman.

“You have managed, Honourable Prime Minister, to transcend cultural and and geographical boundaries to foster an ever-growing partnership between Saint Vincent and the Grenadines and Japan, with your trademark congeniality. Thus, I greatly admire you and all you have achieved as a beacon of leadership in the Caribbean.”

The actual conferment ceremony of the national decoration is expected to take place here this year.

The Orders of the Rising Sun, established in 1875, was Japan’s first award.

It features rays of sunlight radiating from the rising sun. The attachments are shaped into paulownia flowers and leaves.

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