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Hibakusha disappointed by Japan UN resolution

October 28, 2017


A-bomb survivors disappointed with Japanese-led antinuke resolution




NAGASAKI/HIROSHIMA (Kyodo) -- Survivors of the 1945 U.S. atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki expressed disappointment Saturday with the adoption of a Japanese-led resolution by a U.N. panel that called for the elimination of nuclear weapons but contained a watered-down text.


Tadako Kawazoe, a 73-year-old resident of Nagasaki who survived the atomic bombing of the southwestern Japan city, vented her frustration at the resolution, which made no mention of the landmark nuclear weapons ban treaty adopted in July or of the catastrophic humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons use.


The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons was adopted with the support of 122 countries, but nuclear-armed states as well as their allies, including Japan, who receive security guarantees, have not endorsed the treaty.


The Japanese-led resolution, passed by a U.N. panel on Friday, is "out of touch" with the treaty outlawing nuclear weapons, said Kawazoe, who observed negotiators on the treaty at the U.N. headquarters in June.


The latest resolution "could be read as if it partially approves nuclear weapons," Kawazoe said, adding, "Are all the efforts to eliminate nuclear weapons just mere talk?"


Masanori Nakashima, 87, who heads an A-bomb sufferers' union in Nagasaki Prefecture, said, "There is no such thing as clean nuclear weapons. I don't trust lawmakers who cannot understand such a simple thing."


Iwao Nakanishi, an 87-year-old resident of Hiroshima who survived the atomic bombing of the western Japan city, said he was "just dismayed at how (the resolution) does not mention" the treaty at all, nor the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons, this year's Nobel Peace Prize winner.


"Japan's position may weaken at a time when the world is moving toward nuclear abolition," said Nakanishi, who was 15 and at a factory 2.7 kilometers away from ground zero at the time of the Hiroshima bombing.


Kiyomi Matsuda, a 60-year-old local resident who was visiting the Peace Memorial Park in Hiroshima, said, "Japan should not be so hesitant" in moving the antinuclear movement forward, adding that the public should also make greater calls to rid the world of nuclear weapons.


Hiroshima was bombed on Aug. 6, 1945, and Nagasaki three days later.

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