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Of the inhumanity of nuclear weapons

 November 7, 2012

Hiroshima mayor seeks explanation from gov't over anti-nuke statement snub



Hiroshima Mayor Kazumi Matsui visited the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Nov. 6 and submitted a document to Foreign Minister Koichiro Gemba seeking an explanation as to why the government did not agree to a recent statement by 34 countries to work toward outlawing nuclear weapons.

Matsui believes that the declaration matches Hiroshima's goal of eliminating nuclear weapons. Meanwhile, Nagasaki Mayor Tomihisa Taue had earlier asked the government to sign the document.

The statement was jointly released on Oct. 22 at the United Nations General Assembly First Committee by countries including Switzerland, Norway and Thailand. It denounced nuclear weapons as inhumane and held that, "All states must intensify their efforts to outlaw nuclear weapons and achieve a world free of nuclear weapons."

According to the Hiroshima Municipal Government, Mitsuru Kitano, head of the Foreign Ministry's Disarmament, Non-proliferation and Science Department, who received the document from Matsui, said, "We have no objection over the inhumanity of nuclear weapons," but also said, "However, at this stage we cannot agree to the contents of the statement."

Taue wrote, "As the site of an atomic bombing, we feel it is very unfortunate that our country, which was on the receiving end of nuclear weapons, is not among those agreeing to the statement. From the view of nuclear weapons' inhumanity, Japan should lead a new approach to a world free of them."

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