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HOME  > Past issues  > 2015 April 29 - May 12  > 1,000 Japanese march in NYC, calling for end to nuclear arms
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2015 April 29 - May 12 TOP3 [PEACE]

1,000 Japanese march in NYC, calling for end to nuclear arms

May 10, 2015
Akahata Sunday edition

Global peace activists on April 26 marched through the streets of NYC together with about one thousand Japanese citizens and A-bomb survivors (Hibakusha), calling for the abolition of nuclear weapons and the start of negotiations on a Nuclear Weapons Convention. Their parade attracted New Yorkers’ attention.

The demonstrators were mostly from Japan. The Japan Council against A and H Bombs (Japan Gensuikyo) organized a delegation of 1,000 grassroots-based antinuke activists and Hibakusha on the sidelines of the NPT Review Conference held at the UN Headquarters (April 27-May 22). Japanese Communist Party lawmaker Kira Yoshiko joined the Gensuikyo delegation.

The peace marchers on the way toward a park near the United Nations cheerfully appealed to the crowd gathered on sidewalks, asking them to sign a petition demanding a nuclear-free world, singing songs, and handing out paper cranes. Responding to the marchers, many New Yorkers and tourists waved or gave a thumbs-up sign.

The marchers presented about eight million petition signatures to UN disarmament chief Angela Kane at Dag Hammarskjold Plaza and Review Conference chair Taous Feroukhi.

Receiving the petition, Kane expressed her hope that the delegates of the Review Conference will take this message to heart and will join in the pursuit of nuclear disarmament.

Feroukhi stated that these signatures represent the strong expression of the will of the people who demand compliance with Article VI of the NPT requiring the State Parties to pursue negotiations in good faith on nuclear disarmament and total elimination of nuclear weapons.

Over the past five years, there has been an increase in the number of State Parties in support of the total elimination of nuclear weapons. Now, 155 countries or about 80% of State Parties agree with an NPT joint statement calling for an end to nuclear weapons in consideration of their inhumane nature. However, five nuclear-weapons-states keep turning their back on the demand of the international community calling for getting NWC negotiations started.

* * *

On April 24 and 25, Nagasaki Hibakusha Taniguchi Sumiteru and Hiroshima Hibakusha Setsuko Thurlow (now living in Canada) addressed the International Peace and Planet Conference in NYC.

Tony de Brum, foreign minister of the Republic of the Marshall Islands, also attended this conference. The Marshall Islands in April filed lawsuits against all nine nuclear-armed powers with the International Court of Justice in The Hague, claiming that the nine have failed to perform their duties under Article VI of the NPT.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon sent the conference a message urging all NPT Parties and the NWS to fulfill their obligation to work for the abolition of nuclear weapons as stipulated under the treaty.

Past related articles:
> Hibakusha in NY call for abolition of nuclear weapons [May 5 and 9, 2010]
> Japan Gensuikyo presents signatures to the NPT Review Conference [May 7, 2010]
> 2010 Peace March for a nuclear weapons free world begins [May 7, 2010]
> International NGOs jointly call for convention to ban nuclear weapons [May 2 and 3, 2010]
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