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Japan honors outstanding athletics icon Derartu Tulu with the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Rosette

Addis Ababa, November 4, 2023 (FBC) – Deputy Commissioner Derartu Tulu, President of the Ethiopian Athletics Federation and the former world and Olympic champion, will receive the 2023 Spring Imperial Decoration of Japan on Friday.

When the Government of Japan announced the foreign recipient of the 2023 Spring Imperial Decoration on November 3, Derartu Tulu was among this year’s foreign recipients in recognition of her outstanding contribution towards strengthening the bilateral relationship between Japan and Ethiopia in the field of sports diplomacy and exchange.

She will receive the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Rosette, the Japan Embassy in Addis Ababa told FBC.

With regard to sports diplomacy, Deputy Commissioner Derartu Tulu assisted in organizing a meeting of famous Ethiopian runners with the late Prime Minister ABE Shinzo when the latter kicked of last African tour here in Addis Ababa in 2014.

In 2019, Derartu also met Mr. SUZUKI Daichi, Commissioner of the Japan Sports Agency, and Ms. HASHIMOTO Seiko, the then Minister in charge of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games, and shared her experience to contribute to the success of the then upcoming Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

In sports exchange, Derartu made great contribution by sending Mr. Abebe Mekonnen (known in Japan for his three consecutive wins in the Tokyo Marathon) to Kasama city as a coach for the Athletics academy of the city in 2019, among others.

The Order of the Rising Sun, established in 1875, is the Japanese Government’s oldest honor. The Decorations are awarded to individuals with outstanding achievements in international fields, in order to acknowledge their contributions to the promotion of friendship between Japan and other countries and areas. The Decorations also aim to promote the understanding and support of the Japanese public for the activities of the recipients.

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