Hiroshima Mayor Wants Japan to Join Nuclear Ban Treaty

Society Culture

Hiroshima, Aug. 6 (Jiji Press)--Hiroshima Mayor Kazumi Matsui on Tuesday urged the Japanese central government to join a U.N. nuclear weapons ban treaty as sought by hibakusha survivors of the 1945 U.S. atomic bombing of the western city.

"I call on the government of the only country to experience a nuclear weapon in war to accede to the hibakusha's request that the TPNW (Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons) be signed and ratified," Matsui said in this year's peace declaration at a ceremony to mark the 74th anniversary of the bombing.

The ceremony, which started at 8 a.m. (11 p.m. Monday GMT) at Hiroshima's Peace Memorial Park, was attended by some 50,000 people, including hibakusha, bereaved families, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and other government officials and representatives from 92 countries and the European Union.

Izumi Nakamitsu, U.N. undersecretary-general and high representative for disarmament affairs, was present for three years in a row.

At 8:15 a.m., the time when the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima on Aug. 6, 1945, representatives including from the bereaved families rang the Peace Bell. Participants offered silent prayers for a minute.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press