A Japanese Foreign Minister’s Commendation was presented to Sri Lanka Eye Donation Society (SLEDS) by Japan’s Ambassador to Sri Lanka Hideaki Mizukoshi at the Sri Lanka Rupavahini Corporation premises in Colombo on Tuesday (6), the Embassy in a statement said yesterday (8).
The “Foreign Minister’s Commendations” are awarded to individuals and groups for their outstanding achievements in the international field to acknowledge their contribution to the promotion of friendship between Japan and other countries, it said.
The ceremony was part of the special TV programme commemorating President J.R. Jayewardene’s historic speech at the San Francisco Peace treaty 71 years ago, the embassy said. The SLEDS was established in 1955 under the strong leadership of Jayewardene who bridged the closer connection between Sri Lanka and Japan, it said. SLEDS from its establishment to the present has provided much needed services while donating over 8,000 corneas (more than 200 annually) to Japan alone, including President Jayewardena’s own corneas, the left cornea to a Japanese woman and the right to a Sri Lankan citizen, the Embassy said.
In recognising SLEDS’ earnest work towards citizens and endorsing the strong friendship of the two nations, the Government of Japan has extended both grants and technical assistance to Sri Lanka, it said.