Japan's Nakamitsu Praises Hibakusha over Nuke Ban Pact (News)


New York, July 10 (Jiji Press)—Japan's Nakamitsu Izumi, UN undersecretary-general and high representative for disarmament affairs, said Monday that efforts by hibakusha atomic bomb survivors have led to the adoption on Friday of the first-ever treaty to ban nuclear arms.

Activities by hibakusha that highlight the inhumanity of nuclear weapons "generated a huge movement to create a treaty in a humanitarian manner," Nakamitsu, 54, said in an interview with Jiji Press at the UN Headquarters in New York.

The treaty is "the first step toward making a nuclear-free world, once a policy objective, a norm under international law," she said.

Nakamitsu, who makes a point of mentioning hibakusha's "heroic" efforts in her speeches on nuclear disarmament, also said, "Their messages probably had the biggest impact on those trying to establish a norm of humanity that puts the brakes on the use of nuclear arms."

"Although I think (the new pact) will not immediately lead to a universal ban on nuclear weapons, it's very significant that a treaty that can be recognized at least as a norm under international law has been created," she said.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

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