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Wednesday, 30th March 2011
In General Japan News,

Quake relief donations break one billion yen mark

The amount of money donated to help Japan deal with the aftermath of the March 11th earthquake now totals more than one billion yen (£7.5 million), the government has said.

This total includes money from foreign governments, private-sector groups and individuals, while 1,300 tons in relief supplies has also been donated, the Associated Press reports.

Foreign minister Takeaki Matsumoto told a press conference that the amount received by diplomatic missions abroad is expected to reach a grand total of ten billion yen.

Mr Matsumoto expressed his "heartfelt gratitude" on behalf of the entire nation for the financial assistance offered by a total of 134 countries and 39 international organisations.

The generosity has surpassed that seen in the aftermath of the 1995 Kobe earthquake, a customs official told the AP.

However, the BBC reports that many charities have faced criticisms that they were too quick to start fundraising for Japan and did not have a clear idea about whether the money was actually needed.

Written by Mark Smith

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