Anniversary of Iceland-Japan relations reviewed Skip to content

Anniversary of Iceland-Japan relations reviewed

Japanese Iceland fan Yuka Ogura (on the right) provides an eyewitness account of the 50th anniversary reception of diplomatic relations between the two countries, held in Tokyo last week.

Iceland’s Foreign Minister Valgerdur Sverrisdóttir and Japan’s Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs Takeshi Iwaya attended the party, and Icelandic jazz trio Flís provided entertainment.

“Flís happened to be in Japan, so I told [band member] Valdimar that the [Icelandic] Embassy would like somebody to play at the party,” Yuka Ogura, who has been promoting Icelandic music in Japan, tells “It was a great party and Flís provided good music,” she adds.

The 50th anniversary reception was held at Hotel Okura Tokyo – according to Ogura, one of the most exquisite hotels in Tokyo. About 300 guests came to the reception. “Your minister gave a very nice speech about how our relationship has developed and then our Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs brought a really nice message from our Prime Minister [Shinzo] Abe,” Ogura says.

“There was lots of great food. There was a top sushi chef there, and the sushi was superb. For superb Sushi, you have to come to Japan. You just don’t have it in Iceland,” Ogura says.

Ogura is a self-professed lover of Iceland. “I have visited Iceland six times and attended Airwaves [an Icelandic music festival] three times so far. The 2006 Airwaves was the best one I have attended,” Ogura says.

Ogura established Alljos Entertainment exclusively for promoting Icelandic music and she releases Icelandic music in Japan under the record label ICELANDia.

Photos by Yuka Ogura.

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