First of all, I would like to start my message by expressing my appreciation to all of you for your warm support for our organization.
Over a month has passed since the holding of the 11th World Karate Championship on October 31-November 1. With the warm support from the full crowd, Yuji Shimamoto won the Men’s category, and Csenge Szepesi won the Women’s category. While congratulating both competitors on their great performance, I wish to also express my appreciation and sincere respect to the Shihans and Senseis who have guided and supported them. Congratulations.
In relation to this World Championship, we also held various international meetings and the World Karate Seminar. In the meetings, we actively exchanged viewpoints and shared the vision of future development for the organization, and at the seminar, in a beautiful setting with a great view of Mt. Fuji and autumn leaves, we carried out well-focused trainings in the great weather. I would like to take this opportunity to once again thank everyone for their cooperation and support in making the series of events a great success. Thank you very much.
For WKO, the next world competition will be the World Championship in Weight Categories hosted by Kazakhstan in 2017, and I have high expectations that Kazakhstan, led by Country Representative Kairtay Sarmanov, will make the necessary preparations to guide the event to a great success. I would like to ask the Branch Chiefs and Contacts around the world for their kind cooperation and support to the preparation work, and please be sure to always have a sense of appreciation towards the organizer.
Due to an invitation from Korea Branch Chief Il Nam Kim, I recently attended the 1st All Korean Open Full Contact Karate Tournament. The inclusion of Full Contact Karate in the Olympic Games, actively promoted by WKO. For the founding of the international federation to unite the competition, which will be the foundation for activities to promote our Olympic dream, the founding of national federations and organizing of national tournaments are great steps forward, and such developments make me happy. The tournament was held in great success, due to the strong unity displayed by the WKO Korea Branch, led by Country Representative Il Nam Kim, which took the leading role in the organization of the event. The competition level is improving, and I have high expectations that such great momentum in East Asia will initiate further development of the Asia Region as a whole. I would like to express my deep appreciation to the warm hospitality during my stay, and I have high hopes for the further development of the Korea Branch.
For next year, I hope to further increase such activities in various countries around the world, and promote the founding of the international federation to unite the competition.
We only have a few weeks left in 2015, an active year highlighted by activities for the inclusion of Full Contact Karate in the Olympic Games, and the further development of the international united front for Full Contact Karate, symbolized by the cooperation with KWU (Kyokushin World Union). While actively taking part in year-end events, I remember the various events from this year, and with your smiles in mind, I renew my sense of appreciation, and look forward to the great developments that await us next year.
I would like to thank all of you for your kind care and support this year. I sincerely hope that 2016 will be a wonderful year for all of us, full of hope, happiness, and great health. I wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.