15 Juillet 2018
July 14, 2018
Hibakusha calls for global ban on nuclear arms
A Japanese atomic bomb survivor has called for putting the UN nuclear weapons ban treaty into effect as soon as possible. The UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons was adopted a year ago.
About 50 people, including members of NPOs, took part in an event in New York on Friday.
A 76-year-old survivor, Koji Ueda spoke about his experiences following the 1945 US atomic bombing of Hiroshima. He was 3 years old when the city was reduced to ashes by the bomb.
Ueda said that his mother took care of people with severe burns, and that many of the deceased were cremated on the spot. He stressed that the horrifying experiences that hibakusha suffered should not be repeated.
Ueda urged countries to ratify the nuclear weapons ban treaty so that the pact can go into effect as early as possible.
Only 11 nations and territories have so far ratified it.
Pressure from nuclear-armed countries is believed to be blocking the move.
Akira Kawasaki, a member of the steering committee of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons, urged participants to step up efforts to convince the US government. ICAN was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize last year.
An American participant said that he was moved by the hibakusha's speech. He said that he disagrees with the US government's opposition to the treaty and that he will urge members of Congress to accept the treaty.