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Hiroshima urges denuclearization on the 77th anniversary of its bombing

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Hiroshima insisted this Saturday on the need for denuclearization in order to prevent a repeat of the atomic bombing horrors over this Japanese city on the 77th anniversary of the devastating attack, and at a time marked by the escalation of global tensions.

This city in western Japan was the target of the first atomic bomb used in combat in history, named “Little Boy” and launched by the US Air Force B-29 Enola Gay bomber on August 6, 1945. The attack instantly exterminated some 80,000 people, the vast majority of them civilians, a number of fatalities that rose to 140,000 at the end due to injuries and resulting illnesses and that in subsequent years more than doubled.

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The city today held a ceremony in memory of the victims in the Peace Park, located near the hypocenter of the devastating explosion, and in which the UN Secretary General, Anthony Guterres, Japanese Prime Minister, fumio kishidaamong other political figures and “hibakusha” or survivors of the bombing.

After the minute of silence observed at the exact time of the bombing (8:15), Guterres warned during his speech that humanity “plays with a loaded weapon” due to the more than 13,000 existing atomic weapons and the open sources of conflict in Ukraine, the Korean peninsula or the Middle East. “The only thing that separates us from the apocalypse is an error, a misunderstanding or a miscalculation,” Guterres said during his speech at the ceremony, which this year was attended by representatives of a record number of 98 countries and organizations, including none from Russia or Belarus. , who were not invited by the Japanese authorities due to the ukrainian war. Guterres affirmed that there are “signs of hope” such as the tenth revision conference of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) which has been held at the United Nations since the beginning of the month, and whose members he asked “to work urgently to eliminate all the arsenals that threaten our future”.

Japan reiterates its anti-nuclear commitment

The Japanese prime minister stressed along the same lines as the movement towards a world free of nuclear weapons “It seems to be slowing down”, to which he appealed from Hiroshima to “stand up and commit to never repeating a similar tragedy.” Kishida reiterated that Japan will respect his anti-nuclear triple pledge (neither develop, possess nor allow the deployment of this type of weapon in its territory), despite the fact that certain voices from his party have called for a rethinking of these principles in the face of the escalation of tensions in the Asia-Pacific.

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Japan will reconcile the regional security situation with its desire to achieve a world free of nuclear weapons,” said the Japanese president, who pointed to the G7 leaders summit scheduled for next May in Hiroshima as an opportunity to promote nuclear disarmament. However, the Asian country, the only one in the world to have suffered nuclear attacks, has been reluctant to support the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weaponswhich entered into force in 2021. The government led by Kishida considers that the Non-Proliferation Treaty, another parallel initiative signed by the majority of the world’s countries, is a more effective tool to achieve disarmament, although the revision that is being discussed up to now end of the month in the United Nations to strengthen its application has little chance of ending in consensus.

The mayor of Hiroshima, Kazumi Matsui, called on Japan to serve as a “bridge” between the countries that possess and those that do not possess atomic weapons to eradicate artifacts from the planet “that threaten the survival of the human race,” he said. “Entrusting the nuclear button to any world leader carries the risk of repeating the horrors we suffered in Hiroshima,” said Matsui, who also accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of “using his citizens as weapons to take the lives of other people”.

Three days after the bombing of Hiroshima, the August 9, 1945, the US dropped a second nuclear bomb on Nagasaki, leading to Japan’s capitulation six days later and ending World War II. To the tens of thousands of people killed in the attacks were added many others who died in the days and years following it from burns and diseases such as cancer derived from radiation, as well as thousands of survivors who carried the nuclear stigma. Currently there are about 118,935 of these “hibakusha”, with an average age of 84.5 years, according to official data.

Source: Lasexta

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