Category: Japan

United Nations: Tokyo Paralympics lead towards a more inclusive society.

Innovators are joining Paralympians to discuss how sport can help to build a more inclusive society in a series of online discussions organized by the United Nations to coincide with the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics, which continues until 5 September.

After losing her right leg in a car accident as a Japanese high school student, Kaede Maegawa was grateful when her friends offered her support.

Yet, she sometimes felt that she wouldn’t be capable of doing anything on her own.

In order to regain her confidence, she asked her friends and teachers to let her try do things on her own.

This started her on the road to becoming an elite athlete, and a competitor at the 2020 Tokyo Paralympics.

Ms. Maegawa shares her story during SDG Zone at Tokyo panel discussion, in which three inspirational Paralympians talk about the power of sport to expand horizons, and what the Paralympic values – courage, determination inspiration, and equality, mean to them.

Ms. Maegawa, who competes in the long jump, is joined by renowned Sierra Leonean table-tennis para-athlete George Wyndham, and Miki Matheson, three-times Paralympic gold medalist in ice sledge speed racing.

Innovations featured in the Paralympics can eventually help all disabled people, explains Ken Endo, CEO of the technology company Xiborg, in a conversation highlighting technology, design, and initiatives that are making sport more accessible and enjoyable for all.

Mr. Endo leads a project to make a running-specific prosthesis called “blade” available for all, not only for athletes, and is working to break down various barriers, especially in developing countries, exploring how locally available materials can be used to develop blades and increase the number of people using prostheses.

The panel also features Lucy Meyer, Spokesperson for the Special Olympics-UNICEF USA Partnership, for young people with disabilities, and a five-times gold medal swimmer in the Special Olympics.

Ms. Meyer, who also has cerebral palsy, says that doctors told her parents that she wouldn’t be able to sit up or swallow but “we are so happy to report that the doctors were very wrong!”

She is very active in Special Olympics programme which enables children with and without disabilities to compete together in team sports.

“It’s important to me that everyone accepts and includes everyone, but especially people with disabilities, because we are no different.”

The last session of the SDG Zone at Tokyo looks at what sport can bring to the next generation, and how it can help societies to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, and improve, according UN News.

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Olympic athletes describe the power of sport to change the world.

Leading athletes, influencers and innovators have been sharing their thoughts on the role that sport can play in building a better world for all, in UN-led online discussions held to coincide with the Tokyo Olympics.

Sport becomes something that can change the life of refugees who are living in refugee camps.

Because they can achieve something, they can overcome anything that they pass through…and it gives them a platform”, says Pur Biel, a member of the first-ever Olympic Refugee Team at the 2016 Rio Olympics, and a Goodwill Ambassador for the UN refugee agency, UNHCR.

Mr. Biel, a participant in the UN’s SDG Zone at Tokyo series of online talks this week, explained how sport had helped him to live through traumatic experiences in his home country, South Sudan.

The athlete’s experience was echoed by the many other speakers, who shared a common message; that sport can bring about positive transformation in the world, from bringing hope to refugees, to encouraging climate action, and building societies where everyone can excel, regardless of their background.

Tsuyoshi Kitazawa, a former member of Japan’s national football team, stressed the role of sport in building bridges: “whatever you feel in the Games is made possible because the world is playing as one team”, he said.

Izumi Nakamitsu, UN Under-Secretary-General and High Representative for Disarmament Affairs, added that the values sport promotes, such as mutual respect, teamwork, equality, and fair play, are very similar to those that help to promote the development of peace.

“Sport is close to people’s lives, bringing joy and inspiration”, noted Kaoru Nemoto, head of the UN Information Centre in Tokyo.

“Sport provides us with courage and determination, which are needed more than ever to go through this difficult time of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Through these conversations, we hope to highlight the ways that sport serves as an enabler to advance the Sustainable Development Goals, for a greener, more equal, inclusive, and sustainable world for all”. according UN News.

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Japan: UN chief praises work of emergency responders in wake of deadly landslide.

The UN chief on Monday extended his condolences to the families of those who died in a landslide, which struck the Japanese coastal city of Atami in Shizuoka Prefecture, over the weekend.

According to news reports, at least four have been declared dead, with around 80 still missing, when record high levels of rain fell across the region, triggering the landslide in the residential area.

The resort town of around 36,000, famous for its hot springs, is near Mount Fuji, some two hours southwest of Tokyo. Officials have reportedly warned that more heavy rains are forecast this week, keeping the area on high alert.

Landslide in Japan

In a statement released by his Spokesperson, Secretary-General António Guterres said he was saddened by the reported loss of life and destruction caused.

“He extends his deep condolences to the families of the victims, the Government and people of Japan. He commends the work of the emergency responders and wishes a speedy recovery to those who are injured.

“The United Nations stands in solidarity with the Government and people of Japan”, the statement concluded.

The World Government Movement thanks UN News for providing this news to us.

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Joe Biden expected to improve foreign relationships at G7 summit in the UK.

On Joe Biden his first trip abroad during the corona pandemic to the United Kingdom the president of the USA is trying to improve foreign relationships.

After a meeting with Boris Johnson, Joe Biden will attend the G7 summit in Cornwall from Friday to Sunday.

The G7 countries: the USA, Great-Brittain, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and Canada meet tonight in the United Kingdom.

G7 summit in the UK

The World Government Movement hopes and prays the G7 summit will indeed improve the international relationships between the world leaders attending the G7 summit.

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