Solidarity messages to Peace March for nuclear weapons abolition

The Peace March, on its way to Hiroshima calling for nuclear weapons abolition, is getting encouragement from various circles in Japan and abroad.

The anti-nuclear weapons walk is conducted on eleven separate courses and will arrive in Hiroshima on August 4, where the 2001 World Conference against Atomic and Hydrogen Bombs will be held.

Hiroshima City Mayor Akiba Tadanori's message called on the need to increase public awareness so that the elimination of nuclear weapons can be achieved without fail in the 21st century.

Nagasaki City Mayor Ito Iccho's message referred to an NGO conference of local governments and citizens last year calling for the elimination of nuclear weapons. The mayor encouraged further such efforts by the citizens.

Okabe Itsuko, an essayist, wrote, "From my sickbed my heart walks with you." Koyama Seijiro, a film director, known for his recent work which described the peasants' rebellion in feudal Japan, wrote: "Congratulations on the Peace March in which people have one mind for peace."

International messages

From Britain, Bruce Kent, vice president of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND), wrote, "We are fellow marchers because on July 16th I and David Knight, the Chair of CND will start our own 300 mile march. ... Our Joint Marches will help to generate even more support for the proposal that negotiations aimed at the abolition of nuclear weapons should start not in some distant future, but now."

Jacqueline Cabasso, executive director of the Western States Legal Foundation and Coordinating Committee member of Abolition 2000 Global Network to Eliminate Nuclear Weapons, warned about U.S. plans to modernize nuclear weapons and to develop "mini-nukes." She wrote: "We are committed to doing everything we can to challenge these frightening and dangerous plans and to implement the 'unequivocal undertaking'."

Sally Light, executive director of Nevada Desert Experience, sent a fax saying, "In April of this year, we held our annual 65-mile Peace Walk from Las Vegas to the Nevada Test Site. ... our spirits will be with you as you walk the path of peace." (end)